Hundreds of female devotees gathered to offer prayers in Gujarat state on the west coast of India on Tuesday (May 4) after a local priest claimed that the country’s deadly Covid-19 wave was happening because the ‘gods are angry’.
Footage shows the women carrying jars on their heads to offer water as part of the Hindu worship ritual at the Navapura and Nidharada village in Sanand Taluka.
They ignored Covid-19 rules such as social distancing and wearing masks that scientists believe reduce the spread of the pandemic.
Police were alerted to the gathering and took action against 23 people including the village leader, the organiser and the DJ playing music at the religious gathering.
On Tuesday the state of Gujarat reported 13,050 new cases of the virus. India has been one of the worst-hit countries in the world by the Covid-19 pandemic with more than 20.7 million cases as of May 6 and 226,00 dead.