DELHI: On Tuesday, the Delhi court freed all the 36 foreigners in the Tablighi Jamaat case. The foreigners were facing trial in pretext of their involvement in the contravention of COVID rules. It was reported that these people took part in the Tablighi Jamaat event in Nizamuddin in March. This later led to the spread of COVID infection in multiple states.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar Garg called Station House Officer Hazrat Nizamuddin for his statement and evidence. The plea from these accused was seen as a probability. The plea that none of them were present at the given time. All of them went to Markaz at different times. They were picked up from various places. All of this on the directions by Ministry of Home affairs.
“It is beyond comprehension of the court, as to how IO (Inspector Satish Kumar) could have identified 952 foreign nationals out of 2,343 persons who, as per SHO, were found flouting the guidelines, without any Test Identification Parade (TIP), but on the basis of list provided by MHA (Ministry of Home Affairs), added the judge.
The fact that SHO, Inspector Mukesh Walia still cannot give a report on the exact number of people that stayed at Markaz from the beginning till the time of evacuation, then maybe he is lying about his visits and duty in that area.
In any case, his testimony has failed to pass the test of creditworthiness and hence identification by him of the accused persons in the court is not sufficient to discharge the onus of prosecution to prove the presence of accused at Markaz during the relevant period, concluded the court.
The accused foreigners came from various countries like the US, UK, Tunisia, France, Russia, Indonesia and others. These 36 were last of the 952 foreigners that were accused of floating COVID rules. Around 900 of them already pleaded guilty and left India. The rest of them decided to fight their case.