Karnataka doctor refuses to wear mask in supermarket, booked

In a video that went viral on social media, the medical practitioner, later identified as Dr B Srinivas Kakkilaya, is seen involved in a heated argument with a staff member of the supermarket who asked him to wear a mask at the billing counter.

The Mangaluru City Police in Karnataka Wednesday filed a case against a doctor in the city for allegedly refusing to wear a mask at a supermarket.

In a video that went viral on social media, the medical practitioner, later identified as Dr B Srinivas Kakkilaya, is seen involved in a heated argument with a staff member of the supermarket who asked him to wear a mask at the billing counter.

“I am not putting anyone at risk because I have already had Covid and I have recovered from it,” Dr Kakkilaya is seen saying.

The supermarket staff then says “..reasonable, but the rule should be a rule,” after which the conversation heats up.

The doctor then adds, “..foolish rules have been made, have you opposed it? This lockdown is a foolish rule, have you opposed it?…”

Meanwhile, Ryan Rosario, the co-owner of Jimmy’s Supermarket in Kadri, approached the police to file a complaint. In the complaint, Rosario has mentioned that the doctor claimed that he had treated patients without wearing a mask while questioning why he was compelled to wear one while shopping.

“He (the accused) has put my customers and staff at risk… I urge the government to look into this matter and take necessary action against the concerned person,” Rosario stated in his complaint.

Confirming the same, Mangaluru City Police Commissioner N Shashikumar told Indianexpress.com that a case has been filed and an investigation was underway. “Based on the complaint, we have filed a case under relevant sections of the Epidemic Diseases Act 2020 at Kadri police station,” he said.

The top cop added that the incident had taken place on Tuesday. “The incident had taken place on May 18 (Tuesday) but the video went viral and was seen as shared across social media platforms today. Despite repeated requests, he (the accused) is seen refusing to wear a mask and has even questioned the (Covid-19) guidelines issued by the government,” he explained.

According to the police, the doctor has been directed to appear before the investigating officer to explain the incident.

To date, Dakshina Kannada district which includes Mangaluru city has reported 65,908 Covid cases and 826 related fatalities. As per statistics issued by the Department of Health and Family Welfare, the active caseload in the coastal district is 10,982 as on May 18.

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