The Delhi Police on Thursday issued its fourth notice to Tablighi Jamaat chief Maulana Saad asking him to get tested for COVID-19 in a government laboratory. Saad, however, had earlier tested negative for COVID-19 in a private laboratory. His results were submitted to the Crime Branch of Delhi Police on Monday by his lawyer Fuzail Ayubi. Sources in the Crime Branch have reported that the fourth notice has been issued to the Tablighi chief as he has still not responded to certain queries.
An FIR has been lodged against Maulana Saad under the Epidemic Disease Act 1897 for leading a religious congregation at the Nizamuddin Markaz in Delhi between March 13-15 amid the Coronavirus pandemic. As a result of the congregation, the virus spread across the country amounting to around 30% of India's total COVID-19 cases, the Health Ministry had informed earlier. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has also registered a money laundering case against Maulana Saad.
On April 17, Saad had issued a statement stating that he has joined the Delhi police's investigation into the lockdown violation due to the Markaz event, replying to the notices issued by the police. He has also asked the police to issue a copy of the FIR detailing all the sections offences have been registered under.
Sources have also reported that Saad is currently hiding in his brother-in-law's house in Delhi's Zakir Nagar, allegedly in self-quarantine. While more than a month has passed since the police found Markaz attendees huddled in the mosque, Saad claims he is still in 'self-quarantine'. Two of his relatives have tested positive for Coronavirus (COVID-19) in UP's Saharanpur. The police have already booked Saad for culpable homicide and booked several attendees for visa violation.
The Health Ministry has revealed that over 30% of the total COVID-19 cases in India were related to the Markaz. Several states like Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Assam, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh have cases majorly due to attendees of the event and the people they came in contact with. Most of the above-mentioned states have traced the attendees, but those attendees in hiding have been warned of legal action if they don't surrender.