Satish Jarkiholi slams BJP’s mega rally in Belagavi

Satish Jarkiholi, KPCC working president, has opposed the BJP’s plans to hold a mega rally in Belagavi in which Amit Shah, Union Home Minister, is scheduled to speak on Sunday.

“BJP leaders have said that around 3 to 4 lakh people will attend the rally. What does it mean? Does the BJP plan to violate the COVID-19 safety protocols set by its own government at the Centre and the State?,” Mr. Jarkiholi said.

He told journalists that the district stadium on the Jawahar Lal Nehru Medical College premises, has a seating capacity of around 40,000 to 50,000 people.

“If COVID-19 protocols and social distancing norms are followed, only around 10,000 people can be seated. But trying to bring in 3 to 4 lakh people to the rally will be disastrous. The government should not permit such gatherings,” he said.

“The State government is yet to open temples like Saundatti Yallamma where the congregation is less than that of such mega rallies. BJP leaders have one rule for themselves and another for others,” he said. The Congress will approach the courts, if need be, to ban such rallies, he said.

Laxman Savadi, Deputy CM, denied that the party was flouting rules or safety protocols. “We have taken all measures to see that every attendee wears a mask. The State government is not favouring the BJP. We will allow any party to hold rallies if they follow COVID-19 protocols,” he said.

The city police have made all preparations for the smooth conduct of Mr. Shah’s rally. Traffic will be diverted in the Central Business District around Rani Chennamma Circle and the DC office.

All shops on Dr. Ambedkar Road from Rani Chennamma circle to Kolhapur Circle will be closed for a day as Mr. Shah will be staying at a private hotel on the road. Additional police force will be deployed in the city on Saturday and Sunday.

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Printable version | Mar 7, 2021 8:35:19 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/satish-jarkiholi-slams-bjps-mega-rally-in-belagavi/article33584222.ece

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