How Maha Narrowly Avoided Hosting a Tablighi Jamaat Meet in March

A Tablighi Jamaat meet that was set to host 50,000 people and take place in Vasai on 14-15 March was cancelled.

2 min read
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.

A decision taken by the Maharashtra government and district administrators in the first week of March helped the state avoid witnessing a situation like the one seen at the Nizamuddin Markaz in Delhi. A Tablighi Jamaat meeting that was planned to take place in Mumbai’s neighbouring Vasai area on 14-15 March, was supposed to be attended by around 50,000 people.

This event, however, was cancelled after the state government held a video conference on 5 March with district administrators and health professionals, where it was decided that all public gatherings were to be cancelled immediately, reported The Indian Express.

Acting promptly on this decision, the Palghat district administration cancelled the event. “On 5 March, after the video-conference with Chief Secretary Ajoy Mehta, we checked our records and found that the Tablighi Jamaat event was scheduled for 14-15 March. We cancelled it immediately along with a few other public hearings planned in the area,” Palghar Collector Kailash Shinde told The Indian Express.

The tehsildar’s office reportedly wrote to the organisers of the event, informing them about cancellation and the fact that they wouldn’t be allowed to use the government land that was rented out to them for two days.

This decision turned out to be a blessing as over 1,000 COVID-19 cases recorded across India so far, have been traced back to members who attended the Tablighi Jamaat in Delhi on 13-15 March.

A member of the working committee that was set to organise the meet however, told The Indian Express that while the government is claiming credit for cancelling the event, the organisers were given an option to postpone it.

“When they cancelled the permission for the 14-15 March event, the tehsildar told us we could postpone it to April 11-12. Hence, we did not remove our electric meters, fans, lights, etc from the ground. We were there till 20 March, but when we saw it was not possible to hold the event, given the spread of the virus, we took a decision to cancel the congregation.”
Fazl-e-Haq Qureshi, a member of the working committee to The Indian Express 

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