SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir High Court has instructed the Pulwama deputy commissioner to administer the oath of office to Waheed ur Rehman Parra, a youth leader from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), as a district development council (DDC) member, provided that there are no legal restrictions under the Panchayati Raj Act.
Parra had been elected as a DDC member in December 2020, but he could not take the oath of office due to his arrest in two cases related to militants. However, he is presently out on bail in both cases and has approached the high court to be sworn in. The court has ordered the deputy commissioner to carry out the statutory duty of administering the oath of office to Parra, notwithstanding the ongoing writ petition. The court has also noted that Parra’s legal troubles do not affect his entitlement to join the office as an elected member of the DDC, Pulwama. Parra was arrested in January 2021 for alleged offences under various acts, including the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the Arms Act, and the Explosive Substances Act.
Consequently, Parra was unable to present himself voluntarily to the deputy commissioner of Pulwama to take his oath as an elected DDC member. Parra had been granted bail by the special NIA court on January 9, 2022, but was not released as he was subsequently booked in another case under various sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Indian Penal Code at the Counter-Intelligence Kashmir police station in Srinagar. However, he was granted bail again on May 25, 2022, after filing an appeal before the division bench of the high court.