J-K: Executive magistrate orders FIR against 10 PDP leaders for violating Covid norms


SRINAGAR: An executive magistrate in Jammu and Kashmir’s Anantnag district has directed police to register an FIR against 10 PDP leaders for allegedly violating Covid protocols at an event to mark party founder Mufti Mohammad Sayeed’s death anniversary, officials said on Saturday.

Reacting to the development, Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti said it appears that Covid norms apply only to her party and not to the BJP, which held a protest in Kashmir on Friday.

The PDP also shared on Twitter a video purportedly showing the Anantnag deputy commissioner dancing without a face mask at a New Year’s Eve gathering.

Others present at the event are also seen without masks.

Executive Magistrate of Bijbehara tehsil has issued directions to the station house officer of the concerned police station to register an FIR against 10 PDP leaders for violating Covid-appropriate behaviour during a rally at Sayeed’s graveyard on Friday, the officials said.

These leaders include Sartaj Madni, Sayeed’s brother-in-law who is a former deputy speaker of the legislative assembly, and former minister Abdul Rehman Veeri, they said.

Hitting out at the administration over the order, Mehbooba tweeted, “Covid 19 restrictions apply only to PDP. Not to BJP’s protest in Kashmir yesterday, PMs rally in Punjab or the mass poojas attended by hundreds of people to pray for his safety. Talks volumes about J&K admin’s brazen bias against my party.”

Mehbooba was also part of Friday’s gathering but was not named in the order of the executive magistrate.

Later, the PDP posted on its Twitter handle the video purportedly showing the deputy commissioner of Anantnag dancing at a gathering where no one is wearing face masks.

“Here DC Anantnag dancing on New Years eve without a mask where crowd ran into thousands but when it comes to PDP, COVID-19 suddenly resurfaces and turns political,” the party said.