Syed Nadeem Mashwani

NOWSHERA: All the countries in the world are taking steps for containing the spread of coronavirus and the federal and provincial governments in Pakistan are also taking necessary actions, but in some places, the people are complaining about discriminatory actions.

The government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has imposed partial lockdown to halt the spread of coronavirus under which public gatherings are strictly banned, but these restrictions are openly being violated by the influential people and the authorities are acting as silent spectators. Last week, Defence Minister Pervaiz Khattak flouted the government orders by holding a public gathering in Nowshera, while the authorities did not take action.

People of Nowshera said while the government is taking prompt action against the poor people for violations and even arresting the bridegrooms and imposing heavy fines on them, but the influential people are not being touched.

On Sunday, the wedding ceremony of the son of former Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Shaukat Hayat was held in Khweshgi area of Nowshera which again flouted the government orders with loud music and massive gathering of guests. Even more painful was the participation of a large number of law enforcers in the function. The law enforcers instead of taking action on the violation participated in the function.

However, the law enforcers act quite differently when it comes to dealing with a common man. Assistant Commissioner Talha Zubair raided a wedding party of a common man in Azakhel area of Nowshera and not only arrested the bridegroom, but also imposed a fine of Rs50,000 on him.

In Peshawar, the district administration arrested a bridegroom after raiding a wedding party over violation of restrictions imposed by the government for prevention of spread of coronavirus.

The district administration said it raided a wedding party in Pishtakhara area of Peshawar and sent all the guests to home and arrested the bridegroom.

These double standards of the government raised eyebrows and people are criticising discrimination with them. They say the government must take indiscriminate action against violators if it wants to make its announcements effective.

Despite ban on social gatherings, wedding functions are continuing in different parts of KP. People are also sharing pictures of weddings on the social media and making a mockery of the provincial government’s announcements.