HC orders Centre, Delhi govt, police to reply in 10 days on reopening of Tablighi Markaz

The Nizamuddin Markaz which was locked on the premise of getting the area sanitised has remained shut since Mar 31, 2020

NEW DELHI — The Delhi High Court on Friday granted 10 days time to Centre, Delhi government and the city police to file a reply to an application seeking reopening of Nizamuddin Markaz, which is locked since the last one year.

The Markaz is closed since the coronavirus-induced lockdown. On the night of March 29, police and health authorities started bringing people out from the Markaz and sent them to hospitals and quarantine facilities.

On March 31, an FIR was registered after thousands of people, including foreign nationals, participated in the Tablighi Jamaat congregation at Nizamuddin Markaz, with many of them testing positive for Covid-19 later.

Justice Mukta Gupta has directed the authorities to file the status report within ten days on the application filed by Delhi Waqf board seeking reopening of the Markaz.

The Markaz which was locked on the premise of getting the area sanitised, has remained shut since Mar 31, 2020, the plea elaborated.

It further said that keeping the area under lock was a primitive method of enquiry process even if the premises were part of any criminal investigation or trial.

The petition stated that the central government allowed for the reopening of a list of religious places outside containment zones from Jun 8, 2020, yet the Hazrat Nizamuddin area was kept outside the list, as it was said to be in a containment zone.

“However, even after it was removed from the list of containment zones in Sep 2020, the Waqf property was still locked,” the petition read.


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