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Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut has accused the BJP-led Central and Uttar Pradesh governments of mismanaging the Covid-19 crisis while citing instances of behaviour encouraging ‘superstition’ instead of a scientific approach to deal with the pandemic.
Sena MP Sanjay Raut alleged in his weekly column Rokthok, in party mouthpiece Saamana, that while citizens were unable to give a decent cremation to their dear ones and were disposing of the bodies in Ganga river, the ruling party indulged in religious slogans and superstition.
“In Varanasi, the dead bodies have piled up and there is no place to cremate them. We are seeing hundreds of bodies floating in the river which were found in Bihar. In Ayodhya, the Prime Minister conducted the Bhoomi Pujan for the Ram Mandir a few months ago, but now Covid-19 has caused huge havoc there. There is a shortage of oxygen, medicines, hospitals and vaccines and all that the state government in Uttar Pradesh is doing is sloganeering ‘Jai Shri Ram’. This may provide oxygen to a political party but not for the hassled people,” said Raut.
Hundreds of bodies of suspected Covid-19 victims have been found floating mostly in river Ganga over the past few days in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The Bihar government has claimed that the bodies were carried downstream from Uttar Pradesh. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has issued a notice to both states and the Supreme Court has been requested to order a probe into the matter.
“A state minister is asking citizens to perform Yagna so that Covid-19 can be destroyed which is shocking. Some are advocating applying cow dung while others are consuming cow urine to fight Covid-19. What more can happen when our own prime minister is advocating fighting the Covid-19 virus by clapping and banging the utensils,” Raut said.
BJP leader and Madhya Pradesh culture minister Usha Thakur was in news recently for suggesting the Hindu ritual could help prevent the third wave of Covid-19 and some people were seen smearing themselves with cow dung and urine in Ahmedabad in the belief that it could boost immunity against Covid-19.
Raut said the Modi government was more focussed on providing security to their newly elected legislators in West Bengal than containing the virus.
“…It was the duty of the state government, and Mamata Banerjee should have been given the chance but this was not done. The whole motive was to keep their MLAs in check through this mechanism so that they don’t defect back to Mamata,” Raut said.
As per the latest data released on Saturday, Karnataka has reported the highest daily new cases at 41,664 followed by Maharashtra with 34,848 cases and Tamil Nadu with 33,658 new cases. Uttar Pradesh reported 12,547 fresh Covid-19 cases taking the total case count to over 1.6 million, while Maharashtra’s Covid count stands at 5,344,063 or over 5.3 million.