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11 foreigners owing allegiance to Tablighi Jamaat arrested in Bihar for violating visa terms

The state government had received inputs from the Centre about many attendees of the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi last month, which has been blamed for hundreds of COVID-19 cases in India.

Published: 14th April 2020 08:40 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th April 2020 08:40 PM   |  A+A-

Tablighi Jamaat members who attended the conference in Delhi|Anil Shakya

By PTI

KISHANGANJ: Eleven foreign nationals owing allegiance to Tablighi Jamaat have been arrested for violating visa terms by visiting this north Bihar district without informing the local police and carrying out religious preaching, a senior official said on Tuesday.

Superintendent of Police Kumar Ashish said an FIR was registered late Monday against 10 Indonesians and a Malaysian whose samples had been sent for a coronavirus test on March 31 and results of which came negative four days later.

The state government had received inputs from the Centre about many attendees of the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi last month, which has been blamed for hundreds of COVID-19 cases across the country, having entered Bihar.

These included local residents as well as foreign nationals.

Although Bihar has reported 66 COVID-19 cases till date, including a death, none has been said to be linked with the Delhi congregation, that emerged as a hostspot of COVID-19.

Moreover, no one has so far tested positive from Kishanganj, where Muslims are in a majority and which borders Nepal and is situated less than 30 kilometers from the India-Bangladesh border.

"The foreigners were kept in quarantine at a mosque as a precautionary measure. They had failed to inform the local police about their visit to Kishanganj. They also carried out religious preaching.

"This is a violation of their visa terms. Consequently, FIR was lodged against them under the Foreigners Act. They have been sent to jail", the SP said.

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