Mammootty, a Malayalam actor, has been charged with breaking COVID-19 protocols while attending an event at a private hospital in Kozhikode. According to Asianet News, the actor took part in a presentation at the hospital on August 3, after which a crowd gathered outside the hospital. Following a complaint, police at Kozhikode’s Elathur station filed a case against the hospital administrators, actors Mammootty and Ramesh Pisharody, and 300 others under sections 4, 5, and 6 of the Kerala Epidemic Diseases Act, 2021.
Hospital officials allegedly told Asianet News that all protocols were followed within the hospital. According to The Hindu, Mammootty was in town to promote a robot-assisted service for joint replacement surgery.
However, when Mammootty exited the hospital following the ceremony, hundreds of people had reportedly congregated, breaking COVID-19 norms such as maintaining a minimum physical distance from each other and wearing masks. Photographs and recordings of the suspected protocol violation were gathered.
The names of the hospital’s director Ali Faizal, chairman PK Ahamed, chief operating officer Abraham Samuel Raju, actors Mammootty and Ramesh Pisharody, and 300 other people who can be identified are included in the First Information Report (FIR). The police have also arrested producer Anto Joseph, according to the Hindu article. The penalty can be up to two years in prison or a Rs 10,000 fine.
In June of this year, the Kerala Assembly enacted the Epidemic Diseases Bill 2021, granting the government the authority to impose limitations on the spread of contagious diseases. This includes prohibiting gatherings, religious functions, and other activities that the government believes could result in the virus’s spread. District Collectors have been given the authority to decide on a course of action when there is a threat of the disease spreading in their areas.