Bengaluru: Congress, carrying out a 10-day ‘padayatra’ demanding implementation of the Mekedatu project across the Cauvery river. Amid the yatra, the state’s CM Basavaraj Bommai had instructed to keep all the covid protocols in mind. Hence, the testing was being conducted and the party’s state president D K Shivakumar was seen refusing to take a Covid-19 test late Sunday, after the event for the day had concluded.
Arguing with the District Health Officer, who was there to collect the samples, he said that he was ‘fit nd fine,’ and did not needed to be tested. The leader further alleged that health officials were acting on the instructions of Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, who had earlier warned of action for violating Covid norms by conducting the march.
“Rey mister, I am fit and fine,” he told the official.
A case has also been filed against 30 people, including Shivakumar and Siddaramaiah at the Sathanur police station, for violating Covid-19 norms and weekend curfew.
On Sunday the Karnataka BJP had slammed Congress by sharing a video of its Mekedatu padayatra. In the purported video, Congress chief DK Shivakumar was seen coughing. BJP branded the Congress a “superspreader.” “Watch Congress president DK Shivakumar cough in public during his phoney protest against the Mekedatu dam. He appears to be suffering from Covid-19 symptoms, but he is still interacting with Congress employees without a mask. Is he hell-bent on increasing the number of Corona cases? “Karnataka BJP’s official Twitter account tweeted.
Led by Shivakumar and Leader of Opposition in the State Assembly Siddaramaiah, the padayatra with the theme ‘Namma Neeru Namma Hakku’ (Our water, Our right) began at Sangama, the confluence of Cauvery and Arkavathi rivers at Kanakapura in Ramanagara district, and will be spanning a distance of nearly 139 kms.
But, Siddaramaiah was not feeling well, had fever, hence returned to Bengaluru post lunch, and is likely to go back once he is fine, party sources told PTI.
With participation from hundreds of workers, leaders and cultural groups, the principal opposition party in the state remained unfazed by the government’s warning of action in case of violation of COVID restrictions and rules. The government has imposed curfew on weekends and restricted public gatherings to fight the surge in COVID-19 cases, till January 19. It has also imposed night curfew, and prohibited all rallies, dharnas and protests, among others.
Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, former Chief Minister M Veerappa Moily, and several senior party leaders and legislators were present at the inaugural of the padayatra, that covered a distance of about 15 kms on day one.
A few religious leaders and film personalities like actor Duniya Vijay, actor and music director Sadhu Kokila, were among others seen at the inaugural of the padayatra demanding implementation of Mekaedatu project, to which neighboring Tamil Nadu is opposed. Projecting it as an apolitical “Walk for Water,” the Congress has invited seers of various mutts, organisations, leaders of various political parties, film personalities, and Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce, among others, to participate in the march.
As an independent media platform, we do not take advertisements from governments and corporate houses. It is you, our readers, who have supported us on our journey to do honest and unbiased journalism. Please contribute, so that we can continue to do the same in future.