Faced with embarrassment over some of its senior members and former ministers meeting the visiting delegation of 17 envoys in Srinagar on Thursday, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) expelled eight of them from the party for “hurting the sentiments of the people”.

Those expelled are; Dillawar Mir, Rafi Ahmad Mir, Zaffar Iqbal Manhas, Choudhary Qamar Hussain, Raja Manzoor, Javaid Beigh, Abdul Majeed Padroo and Abdul Rahim Rather.

The PDP leaders were among a delegation of Kashmiri politicians who had earlier this week met the Lt. Governor GC Murmu at Jammu and the government had described it as an initiative towards the political process.

The PDP leaders have met the Lt. Governor and the envoys at a time when their top leaders, including former Chief Minister Mehbooba mufti, were under house arrest since the past five months when the Article 370 was scrapped by the Modi government on 5 August.

The PDP announced from Srinagar that “in view of the developments post 5 August and the unilateral move of the government of India which has violated the will and hurt the sentiments of the people, it has come to the attention of the party that certain party leaders have been part of parleys which go against the interests of the state, official position and the core beliefs of the party”. “Party’s disciplinary committee has thus recommended the expulsion of these leaders from the basic membership of the party”.

In an earlier tweet about these leaders entering into parleys, the PDP tweeted; “In @PMOIndia’s #NayaKashmir, the Govt jails those who aided its democracy and strings up Puppets who are ready to bargain at the cheapest price. The Govt should understand that those who really love Kashmiri soil are not for sale!”

Reacting to the BJP government facilitating the visit of these envoys to Kashmir, the PDP tweeted; “Today that @PMOIndia lets a 2nd batch of envoys to see the situation in #Kashmir, it only seems like an attempt to normalize the Govts own clampdown. The dare is on @PMOIndia will they ever let these Foreign Envoys meet political detainees who are jailed since 160 days now?”.

Meanwhile, the National Conference in a meeting under the chairmanship of the Provincial President Devender Rana has resolved to remain in the forefront to strive for upholding dignity and honour of the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

“National Conference cannot absolve itself of its responsibility and commitment to the people of Jammu and Kashmir”, a resolution adopted unanimously at a meeting of the senior functionaries and district presidents stated while exhorting the cadre to stand tall in meeting all the challenges and maintaining a close rapport with the masses besides maintaining harmony and tranquillity as per the party’s cherished agenda of upholding the tenets of democracy, secularism and brotherhood.