More than 700 teachers died of COVID-19 during U.P. panchayat polls: Priyanka Gandhi

It is nothing less than a crime against humanity, she says

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Saturday alleged that over 700 teachers have died of COVID-19 because of holding panchayat elections in Uttar Pradesh amid a catastrophic onslaught of the second wave. She said it is “nothing less than a crime against humanity” and charged the State Election Commission (SEC) with “playing along”.

The party in-charge of U.P. claimed that a pregnant was among the victims. The State government’s actions amounted to ‘terrorise’ the people and hide the truth from them.

The polling for the four-phase elections ended on Thursday with a turnout of 75% in the final phase.

“These elections have been conducted in almost 60,000 gram sabhas of U.P. without any thought of the catastrophic onslaught of the second wave. Meetings were conducted, campaigning continued and the spread of COVID-19 in U.P.’s villages is now unstoppable. People are dying in numbers far, far above the deceitful official figures,” Ms. Vadra said in a series of tweets.

People were dying in their homes across rural U.P., and these deaths are not being counted as pandemic related because people aren’t being tested, she claimed.

Covering up the truth

“The government’s actions are designed to cover up the truth and terrorise both the public and the medical community, which is working tirelessly to save lives. What is happening in U.P. is nothing less than a crime against humanity and the SEC, U.P. is playing along,” Ms. Vadra alleged.

Earlier this week, she had demanded compensation of ₹50 lakh for the families of government employees who allegedly died due to COVID-19 while performing the poll duty.

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