Maharashtra cops file case against Wadhawans for flouting Covid-19 lockdown



An offence has been registered against promoters Kapil and Dheeraj Wadhawan and 21 others, including their family members, for travelling to a hill station in violation of prohibitory orders during the lockdown, officials told PTI on Friday.


The offence under relevant sections of the IPC and the Disaster Management Act, one of them related to disobedience of lawful order, was filed at the Mahabaleshwar Police Station in the Satara district of Maharashtra.



Wadhawan family members, along with others, were detained by civic officials on Thursday from their Diwan Villa farm house in Mahabaleshwar, a popular hill station located more than 300 km from Mumbai, an official said.


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Although there is a lockdown in force, all the 23 persons had travelled from Khandala to Mahabaleshwar on Wednesday evening in their cars despite Pune and Satara districts being sealed to contain the viral infection, he said.


As the Satara district collector’s prohibitory orders restricted anyone from visiting the hill station, the Prant officer of Wai lodged a complaint against them at the Mahabaleshwar Police Station on Thursday, he said.


According to the complaint, the Wadhawan family had no medical or family emergency to visit the place and they had not obtained any permission in this regard.


Based on the complaint, an offence was registered against all the 23 persons under IPC section 188 (disobedience of lawful order of public servant), other relevant sections and also provisions of the Disaster Management Act 2005, which has been invoked to deal with the crisis, he said. All of them have been sent for institutional quarantine, he said, adding a probe was on.


Meanwhile, a bureaucrat was sent on leave with immediate effect by the administration after the official was found to help the Wadhawans and others escape lockdown.


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Kapil and Dheeraj Wadhawan are accused in and fraud cases.


The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had recently issued summons to Kapil and Dheeraj Wadhawan in case and asked them to appear on March 17. The duo reportedly cited the pandemic and skipped the appearance, they had said.


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