The Bombay High Court quashed the FIR and chargesheet filed against eight Myanmar nationals who attended a Tablighi Jamaat congregation in New Delhi during the coronavirus-induced lockdown in March, Live Law reported on Thursday, 24 September.
A bench of Justices VM Deshpande and Justice Amit B Borkar said that there was lack of evidence to prosecute the Myanmar nationals and that it would be an “abuse of the process of the court."
"It is also not disputed that they were kept in isolation from 24.03.2020 till 31.03.2020 under the supervision of Dr Khawaj, NMC Zonal Officer, Mominpura, Nagpur,” the court said, adding that “There is no material on record to prove that applicants had indulged in any act which was likely to spread infection of COVID-19.”
They also pointed out that the foreigners tested negative for COVID-19 during their quarantine period from 3 April, adding that there was no question of spreading the disease, Live Law reported.
Earlier in August, quashing the FIRs filed against 29 foreign Tablighi Jamaat members, the Bombay High Court, in a strongly-worded judgment, said that they may have been used as “scapegoats.”
The foreign nationals were booked under various provisions of IPC for violating their tourist visa conditions by attending the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Nizamuddin area of New Delhi.
Along with these nationals, police also booked six Indian nationals and trustees of the mosques for giving shelter to the petitioners.