Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa on Saturday defended the wedding of his predecessor HD Kumaraswamy’s son earlier this week despite the nationwide lockdown in place to contain the Covid-19 pandemic, PTI reported. Kumaraswamy’s family has been accused of ignoring social distancing norms by inviting a large number of guests to the wedding, none of whom wore masks.
The wedding of Nikhil Kumaraswamy with Revathi, the grandniece of Congress leader M Krishnappa, took place on Friday at a farmhouse in Ramanagara district, about 28 km from Bengaluru. HD Kumaraswamy is a Janata Dal (Secular) leader and the son of former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda.
“All the necessary permissions were given and the marriage was performed in a simple manner,” Yediyurappa told reporters after a press conference on the Covid-19 situation in Karnataka. “There is no need to discuss about it. They had done it well within their limits for which I congratulate them.”
Photographs from the event, held on Friday, showed a huddle of people. HD Kumaraswamy had claimed on Thursday that the wedding will entertain no guests and only “60 to 70 people of the family” would attend the ceremony. According to the Karnataka Police, passes for 42 vehicles and 120 people were given for the event.
Before the countrywide lockdown was announced, HD Kumaraswamy’s family had planned to organise a grand wedding ceremony to be held on a 92-acre plot behind Janapada Loka in the Ramanagara district. HD Kumaraswamy said the venue was changed as it would be “difficult to maintain social distancing” if the event was organised at the family’s residence.
On Friday, Karnataka Deputy Chief Minister Ashwath Narayan had warned that action will be taken against HD Kumaraswamy “without a second thought” if norms of social distancing were not followed at the wedding.
But HD Kumaraswamy posted on Twitter following the event, claiming social distancing was maintained and all precautionary measures were taken. Janata Dal (Secular) leader NH Konareddi and MLC TA Sharavanna also denied the Bharatiya Janata Party’s allegations that norms had been flouted at the event.
Karnataka has so far reported 371 cases of the coronavirus, including 13 deaths, according to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. India’s patient count reached 14,792 on Saturday, with 488 deaths and 2014 recoveries.