Centre blacklists 800 Indonesian preachers for concealing COVID info

0
Huge congregation TJ workers in Markaz masjid in New Delhi is seen in the picture published by Defence News

Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has taken the Markaz masjid issue seriously and may likely to probe into the circumstances that led to the massive violation of Lockdown by the Indian Tabhlig Jamaat (TJ) workers across the country.

Meanwhile, sources in the UHA said it had decided to blacklist at least 800 preachers from Indonesian members of Islamic outfit Tablighi Jamaat which has now under scanner for what they called concealing information on Covid patients among them thereby causing serious harm to the society at large.

Advertisement

In a statement today, the UoHM said that it had shared the details of foreign and Indian Tablighi Jamaat (TJ) workers in India with all States on March 21st, after COVID-19 positive cases among these workers surfaced in Telangana.

The swift action was taken with a view to identify, isolate and quarantine TJ workers who might be COVID-19 positive. Instructions were also issued by MHA to Chief Secretaries and DGsP of all States as well as CP, Delhi. The advisories were reiterated by the DIB to all State DGsP on March 28 and 29.

Meanwhile, TJ workers staying in the Markaz in Nizamuddin, Delhi, were also persuaded for medical screening by State authorities and Police. By March 29, nearly 162 TJ workers were medically screened and shifted to quarantine facilities. So far, 1339 Tabligh Jamaat workers have been shifted to Narela, Sultanpuri and Bakkarwala quarantine facilities as well as to LNJP, RGSS, GTB, DDU Hospitals and AllMS, Jhajjar. Rest of them are being currently medically screened for COVID-19 infections.

Usually, all the foreign nationals visiting India as a part of Tabligh team come on the strength of a tourist visa. MHA had already issued guidelines that they should not indulge in missionary work on a tourist visa. State Police would be examining categories of visas of all these foreign TJ workers and take further action in case of violation of visa conditions.

BACKGROUND

Tabligh Jamaat Headquarter (Markaz) is located in Nizamuddin, Delhi. Devout Muslims from across the country and also from foreign countries visit the Markaz for religious purpose. Some also move out in groups to different parts of the country for Tabligh activities. This is a continuous process throughout the year.

On March 21, approximately 824 foreign Tabligh Jamaat workers were in different parts of the country for missionary work. Besides, around 216 foreign nationals were staying in the Markaz. In addition, over 1500 Indian TJ workers were also staying in the Markaz while around 2100 Indian TJ workers were touring different parts of the country for missionary work. Since March 23, the lockdown has been strictly imposed by State authorities/police across Delhi including in and around Nizamuddin and Tabligh work came to a halt.