Although Keche denied that he had invited people to celebrate his birthday, the local sub-divisional officer has issued a notice under various provisions against Keche for violation of rules invoked in the wake of coronavirus pandemic.
Keche told The Indian Express, “I had invited only 21 labourers, who have lost their livelihood due to coronavirus, and distributed food grains to them. After that I left to visit my guru Bhikaram Baba at Ashta around 11 am. But my political adversaries took advantage of the situation to spread the word that I am distributing food grains leading to several people thronging my residence. When I got the information I rushed back and dispersed the crowd with the help of police.”
WATCH | Amid lockdown, 200 people gather at residence of BJP MLA Dadarao Keche in Maharashtra on his birthday pic.twitter.com/7bHK70n829
Keche added, “I understand that we all must strictly adhere to social distancing norm to fight the coronavirus as desired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. But my opponents have seized this opportunity to tarnish my image.”
Keche, however, didn’t name anyone in particular in furtherance of his allegation.
Army Sub-Divisional Officer Harish Dharmik has issued a notice to local police to take action in the matter under provisions of Disaster Management Act, Epidemic Act, Section 144 of Criminal Procedure Code and IPC Sections 188 and 269.
Wardha Collector Vivek Bhimanwar said, “We had not given him any permission for the programme nor had he sought one from us. He had expressed a desire for a blood donation camp which we had refused permission for. Instead, we allowed blood donation by five persons on the occasion at Arvi Primary Health Centre (PHC) adhering to the social distancing norm. As soon as the police got information about the crowd at his residence, they swung into action and dispersed it. The SDO has directed the police to conduct an inquiry.”
Wardha Superintendent of Police Basavraj Teli, however, confirmed that Keche was at home when the crowd gathered. “We have registered an offence in this regard against Keche,” he told The Indian Express.
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