The Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court barred politicians from conducting any political gatherings during the lockdown on Wednesday. The court directed the politicians to obey the state's 'Break the Chain' circular, which was issued on April 13.
In the Marathwada area of Maharashtra, a division bench of Justices Ravindra Ghuge and BU Debadwar was hearing its suo motu PIL on Covid-19 management.
This order comes in the light of inauguration events physically held by Shiv Sena's Sandipan Bhumre in Paithan, Maharashtra, in the presence of large crowds as mentioned by Amicus Curie.
The bench expressed its displeasure with Minister Bhumer conducting a function with a physical gathering during the pandemic.
"When the Hon'ble Chief Minister has been working untiringly and has appealed to the entire State to maintain physical distancing, would his appeal not bind the Hon'ble Ministers. Would heavens fall if such programs are postponed? We would refrain from drawing any conclusions on this aspect, though we cannot turn a blind eye to the fact that the Hon'ble Minister gave his consent for these programmes and has physically attended these programmes," the court observed as per Live Law.
The court then asked whether officials were above the law and whether lock-down laws apply only to the common man.
An intervenor's lawyer, Yuvraj Kakade, cited an FIR filed against several people on May 9, after the minister's gathering. The minister is not identified in the FIR.
Assistant Police Inspector Ganesh Shivajirao Surwase shrewdly marked down the FIR, according to the court.
The court ordered that such functions should not be held in any form in the light of clause 10 until the lock-down restriction are eased by the Government of Maharashtra. Even agitations and morchas are prohibited, as per the order by the court.
The bench also heard various issues related to COVID-19 during the hearing.