In a strongly-worded decision, the Bombay High Court on Friday nullified the FIR filed against a total of 29 foreign nationals who were booked under various provisions of IPC, Epidemic Diseases Act, Maharashtra Police Act, Disaster Management Act and Foreigners Act for allegedly violating their Tourist Visa provisions by attending the Tablighi Jamaat gathering at Nizamuddin in Delhi.
Apart from the foreign nationals, police also booked six Indian nationals and trustees of the Masjid. Justice TV Nalawade and Justice MG Sewlikar of the Aurangabad bench heard the three separate petitions filed by applicants who belong to countries like Ivory Coast, Ghana, Tanzania, Djibouti, Benin, and Indonesia. All the petitioners were booked after police claimed to have received secret information about them residing at the respective masjids in different areas and offering prayers in violation of lockdown orders.
According to the petitioners, they came to India on a valid visa approved by the Government of India. They came to experience the vivid Indian Culture and hence were attending the Tablighi Jamaat gathering at Nizamuddin in Delhi. They were tested negative for the virus, and then they were allowed to leave the Airport.