The Congress on Wednesday cancelled all political rallies and programmes in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh after stunning scenes yesterday from an occasion in Bareilly district, during which lots of of ladies and teenage ladies have been seen with out masks and in a near-stampede state of affairs.
UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has cancelled a authorities perform in Gautam Buddh Nagar district on Thursday as a result of it has reported the best variety of COVID-19 circumstances within the state.
It’s unclear if the ruling BJP plans to comply with the Congress’ lead in scrapping all political occasions and rallies – which draw crowds of hundreds that make it tough to keep up Covid security protocols – as concern spreads over a 3rd wave of infections led by the extra transmissible Omicron pressure.
In scary visuals from Tuesday, lots of of ladies and teenage ladies have been seen with out masks at a marathon organised by the Congress as a part of its ‘ladki hun, lad sakti hun’ election marketing campaign.
The gang crammed a whole highway and, as they began, just a few ladies within the entrance tripped and fell down, resulting in a short scare as lots of pushed to get previous these within the entrance.
The state of affairs virtually led to a stampede; happily, nobody was injured.
Congress chief and former Bareilly mayor Supriya Aron, who organised the occasion, performed down the scare and deflected considerations by pointing to the stampede on the Vaishno Devi shrine.
UP will vote for a brand new authorities in lower than two months, however the scheduled polls come because the nation is experiencing a spike in Covid circumstances, with a lot of the priority centred on the Omicron variant – a extra infectious and, doubtlessly, extra vaccine-resistant pressure of the coronavirus.
The Allahabad Excessive Courtroom final month requested the Election Fee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi to defer the UP polls, if solely by just a few months.
Nonetheless, after a gathering final week between Union Well being Ministry officers and people from the Election Fee, it was introduced that the polls will probably be held as scheduled.
Some preventive measures have been introduced – together with extending voting hours and growing the variety of voting cubicles – however the fee shied away from cracking down on political rallies organised by all main events, together with the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress.
These rallies are attended by tens of hundreds of individuals, nearly all of whom are normally with out face masks. Worse, zero social distancing is normally noticed throughout such occasions.
“Our accountability begins after ballot dates are introduced and the mannequin code of conduct kicks in. Until then, the accountability lies with the state authorities, and they might act as per suggestions of the state catastrophe administration authority,” Chief Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra stated.