Tuesday November 30, 2021

KP health minister booked for violation of Covid-19 SOPs

April 28, 2021

PESHAWAR: The police have lodged a case against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa health minister and management of a local restaurant for arranging and attending an Iftar-dinner in violation of the Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs).

The case was lodged by the Sarband Police Station late Monday night on the complaint of Assistant Commissioner Matani, Adil Ayub under Section 6-17 of the KPEECA.

Those charged in the first information report (FIR) include the owner and manager of the restaurant as well as one Taimur Saleem Jhagra, whose designation wasn’t mentioned even though it is no secret that he is the provincial health minister and has been vocal on the social media calling for adherence to the SOPs.

He along with other ministers criticised the opposition parties last year for staging rallies and not following SOPs. The has been urging the people to wear masks and follow SOPs as hospitals are struggling to cope with the rising number of Covid-19 cases.

However, the photos of the Iftar-dinner that went viral on social media on Monday show the minister without mask or maintaining social distancing. The police and district administration have been making claims for the last many days about arresting people in large numbers after lodging cases against them. It seems they acted after criticism on social medi a.

The FIR was registered at 11:55 midnight on Monday. It stated that the Iftar-dinner was arranged around 7 pm and the SOPs were violated by a large number of people. It added that the accused are yet to be arrested.

“The offence is bailable and the accused could get bail from the court of the deputy or assistant commissioner after imposition of fine, which is normally Rs300,” an official requesting anonymity told The News.

Many on social media criticised as to why the common people are being arrested and humiliated on roads and streets if the administration and police cannot take action against influential people.

Capital City Police Officer Abbas Ahsan on Tuesday tweeted that 124 cases were registered and 259 people arrested by the police for violation of Covid-19 SOPs. When approached by the media, no senior police official commented on the FIR against the minister or plan for making raids to arrest the accused.