Kerala

Case against organisers of retreat meet in Munnar

The police have registered cases under IPC section 269 and the Kerala Epidemic Diseases Ordinance against the organisers of a retreat meet held in Munnar from April 13 to 17 as over 100 priests who participated in it were infected with SARS-COV-2 and two succumbed to COVID-19.

District Collector H. Dinesan on Wednesday sought a report from the Devikulam Subcollector and asked the District Police Chief to register cases against the organisers. The annual meeting of priests and deacons was held at the Church of South India (CSI) church parish hall in Munnar, violating the COVID-19 protocols.

Tahsildar’s report

Munnar Deputy Superintendent of Police R. Suresh said that the cases were registered based on a report by the Devikulam tahsildar.

The Church authorities had sought no permission from the authorities concerned for conducting the retreat meet in which CSI moderator and Bishop of the south Kerala diocese of the Church Dharmaraj Rasalam and nearly 480 priests participated. There was crowding inside the hall and the participants did not wear face masks as evident from the video grabs and pictures released by a section of the participants. A complaint in this regard was also filed to the Chief Secretary.

Mr. Suresh said the police were trying to collect photographs and videos of the retreat. The report by the tahsildar stated that the organisers did not follow COVID-19 protocol, he said.

The priests comprised those from CSI churches in Thiruvananthapuram. The Bishop of the south Kerala diocese who also contracted COVID-19 is currently under home quarantine.

It is alleged that the retreat meet was held though a section of the priests had objected to it. The complaint given to the Chief Secretary stated that the stand of the Church authorities led to a superspreading of the virus and many priests are in various hospitals in Thiruvananthapuram in a serious condition.


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Printable version | Jun 17, 2021 10:54:26 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/case-against-organisers-of-retreat-meet-in-munnar/article34500058.ece

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