The Allahabad high court has granted bail to 16 Tablighi Jamaat members, who are foreign nationals and were allegedly hiding in Prayagraj during nationwide lockdown. Justice S. S.Shamshery passed the order on two separate bail applications.
One bail application was filed by Muhammad Madalee, Hasan Pacho, Sitthipogn Limoolsuk, Surasak Lamoolsuk, Arsen Thomya, Abdul Basir Yeedoromae, Abdunlah Maming, Oapdun Wahab Wimutikan and Romlee Kolae of Thailand (CRIMINAL MISC. BAIL APPLICATION No. – 20814 of 2020).
Another bail application was filed by Idrus Umar, Ade Kustina, Samsul Hadi, Imam Safii Sarno, Satijo Joedijono Bedjo, Hendra Simbolon and Dedik Iskandar of Indonesia(CRIMINAL MISC. BAIL APPLICATION No. – 20833 of 2020).
It was alleged that these 16 foreign nationals had attended Tablighi Jamaat meet at Nizamuddin in New Delhi along with many other Indian Jamaatis in March 2020.
Jamaatis did not violate any provision of law
The petitioner’s counsel said that all the Jamaatis had valid passports and were in Prayagraj when the nationwide lockdown was declared. They did not violate any provision of law, including the Foreigners Act. There was no fault in the visa and passports of the applicants. Further, they had been languishing in jail since April 21, 2020, petitioner’s counsel added.
According to allegations made in the FIR, during Covid-19 pandemic, the applicants were hiding in a guest house at Prayagraj without any information to the administration and the pandemic protocol was not followed by them.
The court while allowing the bail application of the petitioners directed them not to influence the prosecution witnesses and appear on the dates fixed by the trial court unless personal appearance is exempted by the trial court.