After 24 people who attended a religious congregation at Delhi's Nizamuddin Markaz tested positive for coronavirus, Delhi Police registered a case against Maulana Saad and other members of Tablighi Jamaat for violation of government directions. Delhi Police said that the management violated directions regarding restriction of social/political/religious gathering amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The Delhi Police Commissioner said that the FIR was filed by Delhi Police Crime Branch under Section 3 (penalty for offence) of the Epidemic Disease Act 1897 and Sections 269
(Negligent act likely to spread infection of disease), 270
(malignant act likely to spread infection of disease), 271
(disobedience to quarantine rule) and 120b
(punishment of criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code, 1860
. In Delhi, at least 24 people who participated in the event have tested positive for Covid-19.
On Monday night (March 30, 2020), the Telangana government confirmed that six people who had attended the congregation in Delhi died of coronavirus in the state. States across the country is in the process of tracing all members of the Jamaat as well as those they came in contact with. Delhi CM Arvind Kewjriwal stated that 1107
people who attended the congregation have been quarantined. Arvind Kejriwal slammed the organisers of the religious gathering saying it was "highly irresponsible
" on their part to hold such an event at a time when thousands have died in other countries due to the pandemic. He said that his government has already written to Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal recommending the registration of an FIR against the organisers. Nationals from the UK and France are among 281 foreigners out of 1,830 people who were found by the police in the last two days at the Markaz that became a key source of coronavirus spread in the country, officials said. Markaz Nizamuddin, the international headquarters of the Jamaat for nearly 100 years, has said when Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the "Janta Curfew
" on March 22, 2020 they discontinued ongoing programmes but a large number of people were stuck there because of the closure of transport services. Delhi Police has claimed that they sent two notices to the mosque committee but they still didn't mend their ways. Notices were sent on March 23, 2020 and March 28, 2020. Sources said, on March 23, around 1500 people were sent to their respective states from the Markaz. However, it is not clear how many of them were coronavirus positive. The mosque committee said that they wrote a letter on March 23 to the police seeking permission for vehicles so that the people could be sent away. A letter addressed to Lajpat Nagar ACP, Atul Kumar, by Maulana Yusuf on behalf of the Markaz masjid stated that no fresh entry was given and efforts were being made to decongest the place but after Janta Curfew further orders of lockdown. The sources further indicate that the Delhi Government knew about the situation prevailing at Nizamuddin.