A Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator and political secretary of Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, M P Renukacharya, on April 8 said the Tablighi Jamaat members who attended the religious congregation in New Delhi last month should be "shot dead" if they don't show up for coronavirus testing.
"Those who returned from New Delhi after taking part in the Tablighi Jamaat convention must visit the hospital for treatment. But, some of them are not doing it, it won’t be unfair even if such people are shot dead," Renukacharya said, The Indian Express has reported.
The legislator further said those who are not reporting to hospitals are "traitors" and that spreading coronavirus is "also like terrorism".
"Spreading COVID-19 is also like terrorism, and all those who are spreading the virus are traitors," Renukacharya said. The MLA's comments come days after Yediyurappa had made warned people against making divisive and communal statements against the Muslim community, according to reports.
"Nobody should speak a word against Muslims. This is a warning. If anyone blames the entire Muslim community for some isolated incident, I’ll take action against them without a second thought. Will not allow that to happen," Yediyurappa had said during an interview to a regional channel.
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Renukacharya's comments, meanwhile, also come a day after another senior BJP leader had questioned the "intent" of the attendees of the Tablighi Jamaat event.
"Questions do arise about their intent. Why are they not cooperating? Do they want to increase the number of coronavirus cases? So I request the government that it’s been enough time given to them to come for tests, now the government should arrest the people who are not coming to the hospital within 24 hours," the party's state general secretary and an MLA, Arvind Limbavali, had said, according to the report.Click here to get all the news on the coronavirus pandemic