Case booked against 79 for organising mass reception for

Kochi, Mar 16 (PTI) The police on Monday registered a case against 79 people for organising a mass reception for a popular reality show contestant on his arrival at the Cochin International Airport despite restrictions on such gatherings in view of the coronavirus threat.

Those booked are four named accused and 75 others, the police said.

The reality show participant and his supporters allegedly created chaos at the airport on Sunday by violating the directive issued by the government to prevent spread of novel coronavirus in the state.

The Nedumbassery police on Monday charged them under Sections 143, 147, 149, 188 and 283 of Indian Penal Code (IPC), which broadly deals with unlawful assembly, rioting, disobeying orders of a public servant and causing obstruction to public way and thereby causing danger for the general public.

Police also alleged they violated a High Court ruling that there should be no procession around 500 metres from the airport.

Ernakulam district Collector S Suhas slammed the behaviour of the crowd at the airport premises at a time when all sections of the society were on high alert over the spread of novel coronavirus.

Two people, including a UK national tested positive for COVID-19 in Kerala on Sunday, taking the total number of affected to 21 in the state as the government launched a “break the chain” initiative to prevent the spread of the virus.

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