Srinagar, Dec 1 (IANS) Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Saturday blamed the PDP for encouraging protests by women who took offence to alleged remark that the opposition People's Democratic Party (PDP) was giving make-up kits to women panchayat members as bribes for votes.
Campaigning for support from panches and sarpanches (village heads) for the Congress and National Conference (NC) candidates for the four legislative council seats elections Dec 3, Omar said in Ganderbal that the PDP was trying to bribe women panches and sarpanches with make-up kits.
Reacting to the protest by some women in his home constituency Ganderbal Saturday, Omar posted on micro-blogging site Twitter: "When you can't get a spontaneous protest why not encourage a protest to divert attention from the truth."
"Do you think panchayat members will sell their conscience for a make-up kit," the chief minister said at the campaign rally.
PDP president Mehbooba Mufti had taken strong exception to the chief minister's allegations and volunteered to withdraw from the elections if the accusations were proven.
Rural Development Minister Ali Muhammad Sagar responded to Mehboobs Mufti's remarks saying that the chief minister had been "told by someone about the PDP distributing make-up kits among women panches and sarpanches".
The ruling Congress-NC alliance is fighting the legislative council elections jointly, fielding two candidates each from the Valley and the Jammu region. The PDP has fielded four candidates.
--Indo-Asian News Service