On the 27th of April, Bandi Sanjay Kumar, the President of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Telangana, conducted a massive road show.
The road show in Warangal region was a part of campaigning for the upcoming Greater Warangal Municipal Corporation (GWMC) elections in Telangana. The BJP took to the official Twitter handle of the Telangana BJP and posted the pictures and videos of the rally by Bandi Sanjay Kumar.
The incident and roadshow caught attention for violating the Novel Coronavirus or COVID-19 norms. During the roadshow, many people were seen flouting Novel Coronavirus protocols like not wearing face masks, maintaining social distance and sanitizations. Amid the massive surge in the Novel Coronavirus cases in the state, BJP unit of Telangana, violated COVID-19 norms and conducted the grand show.
It also comes a day after the Madras High Court slammed the Election Commission of India (ECI) blaming the conducted roadshows and campaigns to be the reason behind the second wave of COVID-19 in India.
Meanwhile, on the 28th of April, even the ECI banned victory rallies and procession after the elections results in 4 states and one union territory.
Despite knowing the consequences of such gatherings, the BJP unit in Telangana conducted the roadshow, making it a dangerous situation, especially when the State witnessed more than 10,000 COVID-19 cases on the 27th of April. After facing criticism on the microblogging site, Twitter, Telangana BJP deleted the tweets.
The Telangana State Election Commission (SEC) decided to conduct the GWMC elections on the 30th of April. Political parties like the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS,) the Communist Party of India (CPI) and the Indian National Congress (INC) are also in fray for the 5 municipalities and 2 municipal corporations of the GWMC elections.
Meanwhile, similar to the BJP, the TRS, the INC and the CPI are also conducting roadshows and rallies within the GWMC limit.
TRS leaders like T. Harish Rao and Eatala Rajender are campaigning for their candidates in the GWMC elections.
On the other hand, as per the latest COVID-19 bulletin, Warangal Urban reported 653 cases in the last 24 hours, Khammam witnessed 424 cases, Nagarkurnool reported 257 cases, Siddipet reported 230 cases and Nalgonda, which is where Nakrekal municipality falls, reported 469 cases. Mahboobnagar, which is where Jadcherla municipality is located l, reported 417 cases and Rangareddy, which Kothur municipality falls under has reported 621 cases. Despite increasing cases, political parties are busy campaigning irresponsibly flouting all the COVID-19 norms.
Indian Medical Association (IMA) Telangana State Vice President Dr. Sanjeev Singh Yadav pointed out the inadvisability of elections at this time. He said, “It is clear from the past experiences that the virus spreads when there are huge gatherings and a breach of COVID-19 protocols.” He added, “The state government is saying the cases are increasing because people are coming from other states. However, knowing this, and when there are more than 5,000 cases every day, I do not think it is the right time to conduct any election. It will be a big problem for the people of Telangana who are already suffering because of issues in the existing health care system.”
The GWMC elections are scheduled to be held on the 30th of April.
Stay tuned for further updates.