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1,640 foreign Tablighi Jamaat members were in India, only 66 contracted COVID-19: Jamiat


PTI, May 15, 2020, 6:49 PM IST

New Delhi: As many as 1,640 foreign Tablighi Jamaat members from 47 countries were in India at the time of Nizamuddin Markaz gathering, of whom only 64 tested positive for COVID-19 and two more died of the virus, prominent Muslim organisation Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind said on Friday.

Jamiat president Maulana Arshad Madani said the “highlighting” of Tablighi Jamaat cases while talking about the total number of cases in the country had allegedly created an atmosphere of hatred against Muslims.

Maulana Madani said that now when there are more than 78,000 cases of coronavirus, the Tablighi Jamaat figures are not being highlighted.

Citing data compiled by his organisation through various embassies and the Nizamuddin Markaz, Madani said there were 1,640 members of foreign Tablighi Jamaat from 47 countries in India at the time of the Markaz incident.

Of them, 64 tested positive for the virus and two died due to it. All 64 people have now recovered.

The foreign Tablighi Jamaat members included those from Indonesia, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Myanmar, Sudan, Singapore, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Philippines, Russia, Sri Lanka, US, Syria, Belgium, Brazil, Australia, and Afghanistan.

Out of the total foreign Tablighi Jamaat members, 739 are in Delhi and the rest are in other states, the Jamiat said.

Maulana Madani said coronavirus spread has nothing to do with the Tablighi Jamaat but it was portrayed by vested interests to be the case to create ill-will against Muslims at large.

Hundreds of Indians and foreigners attended a Tablighi Jamaat congregation in the Nizamuddin area of Delhi in March, ignoring warnings by the government against large gatherings in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

A number of people who attended the event were later found to be suffering from COVID-19.

Earlier, government sources said foreign nationals, who attended the congregation will face punitive action if they are found to have participated in the gathering violating visa rules.

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