According to media reports, the Delhi Police’s team of crime branch officials is all set to nab controversial Muslim cleric Maulana Muhammad Saad – the mastermind of the Tablighi Jamaat coronavirus incident, to question the Tablighi leader and other people named in the FIR in next two days. The crime branch will include doctors in the team so that Maulana Saad does not get an escape route, reports India TV. He has been absconding since March 28.
The sources in the Delhi police told India TV that they also suspect that Maulana Saad might make excuses to avoid questioning claiming that he has just come back from home quarantine, therefore, he will not be able to support the inquiry immediately. He might also say that since he was in quarantine from last 14 days therefore he is not aware about the current situation of the Jamaat headquarters and he needs time to talk to his colleagues, the sources said to IANS.
“We are thinking of including a team of doctors so that he can’t evade the questioning now,” said a police officer of the Crime Branch who was asked how would Delhi police counter claims of the Maulana.
The officer added that Maulana will be quizzed on why was such a huge gathering called despite repeated warnings from the police, SDM, WHO and health department of Delhi government. The Crime Branch official also added that there is no need for any evidence as of now. The further line of investigation will be prepared on the basis of the statements of the accused, he added.
Responding to the questions on Maulana Saad’s insistence of meeting police in the Markaz headquarters, his whereabouts and delay in questioning, the official said, “All such news has been spread by the media. We are doing what needs to be done. We are ready with everything. Till now we are waiting for his quarantine period to be over because social distancing is important during this pandemic spread.”
Maulana Saad Khandalvi is the chief of Nizamuddin Markaz, the event which has now emerged as a hotspot for the maximum cases of coronavirus as over 1300 of the total number of Tablighi Jamaatis have been traced back to the event and their contacts. Nearly 25,000 people have been quarantined by the government of India.
Maulana Saad is booked under The Epidemics Act 1897 for allowing religious congregation in the month of March despite repeated warnings from the centre and the state government. He disregarded the guidelines issued by the government in the light of the Wuhan coronavirus epidemic which is spreading rapidly.
Earlier, there were reports that the head of the Tablighi Jamaat, Maulana Saad, who claims to have quarantined himself in the wake of the Wuhan Coronavirus outbreak was reportedly using his time to gather support and mobilise the Jamaatis. Saad who is a resident of Zakir Nagar is hiding on the outskirts of Delhi at a supporter’s house. Reportedly, the Islamic cleric had hidden in a dense population area, knowing well that it could help evade arrest.