Uttarakhand Congress president booked for violating Covid norms during protest against farm bills
Uttarakhand Congress president Pritam Singh and other party members have been booked for allegedly violating the Covid-19 norms by holding a protest march on September 28 against the recently passed agriculture laws by the Centre, said police officials on Wednesday.
Congress members led by Singh had held a protest march towards the governor’s house against the aforementioned laws but were stopped on the way by the police. The Congress members had then held a sit-in protest before submitting a memorandum to the sub-divisional magistrate, who had come at the protest site to meet them.
Manibhushan Shrivastava, station house officer of Dalanwala police station, where the Congress leaders have been booked said, “They were booked on Tuesday for violating the Covid norms under relevant sections of Epidemic Diseases Act and Disaster Management Act.”
“In the case registered, party state president Pritam Singh, vice president Suryakant Dhasmana were named along with at least three others and unidentified other members. We are examining the video footage of the protest and identifying other people in the march.”
Reacting to the development, Congress vice-president Dhasmana called it a move by BJP-led state government to “suppress the voice of the Opposition”.
“This is purely done to stop us from raising our voice against the government’s anti-people policies. But we are not going to hold back despite these cases and will continue to hit the streets for the public,” said Dhasmana.
He added, “We are not going to be intimidated by the government and won’t even take permission for our future protests. Will just inform them about the date and that’s it, as Mahatma Gandhi never took permission from British government for protests.”
The BJP, meanwhile, justified the action accusing Congress of “flouting all Covid-19 norms by holding public events.”
“At the time when the government is making all efforts to curb the Covid-19 spread, Congress is hell bent on derailing it and spreading the infection by carrying protests and rallies. This is highly condemnable,” said Devendra Bhasin, BJP state vice-president.
This is not the first time that the Congress leaders have been booked for violating Covid-19 norms. Earlier during the lockdown, Singh, former CM Harish Rawat and other senior leaders were booked in at least three cases for organising rallies and protests against the government.