Sports

Gujarat: BJP-held cricket match in Botad in the soup for ‘violating’ Covid norms

Amid rising cases of Covid-19 in the state, a video shared by former minister and BJP MLA Saurabh Patel of a night cricket tournament has gone viral on social media for the wrong reasons.

The video, shared by Patel on his social media handle, shows the crowd violating Covid protocols by not wearing masks and not adhering to social distancing norms during the night cricket match that was part of a tournament organised by the BJP.

The spectators had gathered at the Government High School ground in Botad town Saturday night to watch the final match of a cricket tournament organised by Patel.

However, he said he did not expect the crowd and emphasised there were no active cases of Covid-19 in his constituency. Currently, the district conducts fewer than 500 tests a day on an average and had recorded its last Covid case in the first week of July.

“The tournament started on December 1 and a total of 140 teams participated in it. But barely any spectators had turned up to watch the matches. We saw some crowd the day before. But we were not expecting such a huge crowd for the final match,” Patel told The Indian Express.

Incidentally, former Indian pacer Munaf Patel had also turned up at the tournament venue and greeted the crowd. “But I don’t think he drew the crowd as he was there barely for about 20 minutes,” said the four-time MLA.

When asked if the organisers had made arrangements to ensure that the people who turned up at the ground wore masks and followed other Covid-19 protocols, the former minister said, “We were not expecting the crowd given how the previous nights had gone. The objective of the tournament was not to violate Covid-19 norms but to host an event that had not been organised in Botad so far. In any case, there are no Covid-19 cases in my constituency.”



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