PUNE: People entering the MIT College venue in Pune, where Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated several developmental projects, were asked to remove their masks, socks and in some cases even shirts if they were black, possibly to prevent any protest.
Speaking on the issue, Pune police commissioner Amitabh Gupta said instructions had been issued to not allow black flags.
"There must be some confusion as the instruction was about black flags and black pieces of cloth, not about clothing (itself)," Gupta said.
Journalist Mangesh Phalle, who covered the event, said he was asked to remove his black-coloured mask by those on security detail at the venue.
The prime minister was in the city on a one-day visit during which he inaugurated a stretch of the metro rail, a statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, a gallery dedicated to legendary cartoonist RK Laxman and the golden jubilee celebrations of Symbiosis University.
Before the prime minister arrived in Pune this morning, Congress and NCP activists staged protests alleging that Modi had "insulted" Maharashtra by suggesting that the state had encouraged the spread of COVID-19 to other states.
The protesters came out on roads carrying black flags and placards, with 'Go Back Modi' written on them, near Alka Talkies chowk and in other areas in the city.