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The Centre has told the Supreme Court that there is no need for a CBI inquiry into the Tablighi Jamaat event held in Delhi’s Nizamuddin area in early March.

The goverment said this in an affidavit filed in response to a plea seeking CBI inquiry into the Nizamuddin Markaz where thousands of Tablighi Jamaat members attended the event in spite of prohibition on religious gathering by the Delhi Government to contain the spread of COVID-19.

Supreme Court Bench of Chief Justice S.A. Bobde , Justice AS Bopanna and Justice Hrishikesh Roy today heard the petition that questions the role of the Centre, the Delhi government and the Delhi Police for “risking the health of millions of citizens by allowing the huge congregation comprising foreigners”.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta apprised the court that the Centre has filed its reply to the PIL, on which the petitioner sought time for filing rejoinder to the reply.

The Centre in its affidavit has stated that an FIR dated 31.03.20 in this regard has already been filed and the investigation is carried out by the Crime Branch of the Delhi Police which is at an advance stage and it will be completed in time bound manner, hence plea for CBI probe does not merit any consideration.

The Centre has, however, gave an undertaking that if the Supreme Court wants a comprehensive report regarding the seriousness of the investigation, the same would be filed by the Union in a sealed envelope.

The affidavit states that “during inspection around 1300 persons from different states as well as foreign countries were found residing in the premise without maintaining any social distancing. Maulana Mohd. Saad and the management of the Markaz had deliberately, wilfully, negligently and malignantly committed acts which were in direct contravention to the lawful directions of the Government”.

The passports and visa application forms of the Tablighi Jamaat Members clearly show that they had obtained the tourist visa or e-Visa on a false pretext and they have been served the notice u/s 41 of CrPC, says the affidavit.

The Centre said that the investigation is being conducted in day to day basis and efforts are being made to finalise the investigation and submit a report u/s 173 of CrPC. The Court has directed to list the matter after two weeks.

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