The country is unlocking after the nationwide lockdown while following the rules of social distancing.
But on June 7, this former Samajwadi party MLA, Bhagwan Sharma aka Guddu Pandit forgot all about the pandemic and social distancing as he celebrated a supporter's birthday on the road.
The two-time MLA from Debai, Uttar Pradesh didn't follow social distancing norms as he cut a cake by the road on the Eastern Peripheral Highway in the jurisdiction of Noida district's Kasna police station.
This event was recorded on video where Pandit was surrounded by his supporters while he is seen cutting the cake using a battle axe on the bonnet of his car.
Former UP MLA Guddu Pandit cuts cake, placed on car bonnet, using a battle axe. Pandit (in olive Kurta) is seen surrounded by supporters flouting social distancing norms. Pandit has been booked several times for lockdown violation by Bulandshahar police. @Uppolice pic.twitter.com/DDH76wJwbo— Piyush Rai (@Benarasiyaa) June 7, 2020
Later on, he is also seen putting 'tilak' on a youth's forehead and the cake is distributed among his supporters.
Nobody is wearing a mask in the video which was broadcasted live from Pandit's Facebook account!
When questioned about this grave violation, Pandit stated that he was coming back from Noida after performing his mother-in-law's last rites when he was stopped by his supporters.
Ex MLA Guddu Pandit clarifies. His b'day is on July 10. He had gone to Noida and was returning to Bulandshahr when a group of youth celebrating b'day on the highway spotted him. Youth insisted him to cut cake. He "advised" them to take precautions due to Covid-19. pic.twitter.com/rabWi2vlFR— Piyush Rai (@Benarasiyaa) June 8, 2020
He claimed that his supporters identified his car and stood in front of it.
I couldn't run them over. When I stepped out of my car they told that it is the birthday of one of the youths in the group. They requested me to cut the cake. I had no option but to oblige them. I told them that in the times of coronavirus crisis, it is your responsibility to keep the public vigilant, hence you should not be indulging in such acts yourself.
- Former legislator
The local authorities are looking into the matter and have booked Guddu Pandit along with others for violating the rules, as per reports.
According to sources, this ex-MLA has been booked at least 5 times in the last two months for openly disregarding lockdown rules. Just last month, he was booked for 'luring exhausted migrant labourers by offering them food and beverages' outside his home.
No matter how careful we are, if we don't follow social distancing rules, we'll have a tough time getting out of this pandemic!