Hyderabad: Tableegh Markaz in New Delhi has maintained that no gatherings were held after the prohibitory lockdown orders were issued by the state and central governments.

Six people, who had attended the religious congregation early this month died of COVID-19 in Telangana.

In their letter addressed to the Assistant Commissioner of Police, New Delhi, the Tableegh Markaz maintained that “the question of a gathering of many persons despite the prohibitory lockdown orders does not arise at all as these persons were already inside the Markaz before and at the time of promulgation of prohibitory-lockdown orders.”

The letter also stated that no new person was allowed to enter the Markaz after the lockdown order.

It may be recalled that the Delhi Health and Family Welfare Department on March 16 had ordered restrictions on all social, cultural, religious, political and academic events. However, reports suggest that the religious gathering was held from March 13-15, a day before the government had issued restriction orders.

Furthermore, the Markaz had also sought help from the Delhi government to vacate the persons (except Markaz residents and families) from the Markaz during the lockdown.

The community had faced issues while vacating people due to the Janata Curfew called for by the Central government on March 23. “The Markaz was mostly vacated on March 23. However, further effort to decongest and vacate the Markaz premises had to be stopped midway due to extended lockdown from March 23 for the next 21 days,” said Moulana Yousuf of the Markaz.

Located in the Hazrat Nizamuddin area in New Delhi, Bangle Wali Masjid has been a usual site for religious gatherings. However, with six deaths reported from Telangana, the gathering has gained further traction after it became known that the deceased had attended the congregation. According to sources, 380 people from Telangana had attended the religious meeting in Delhi, of whom 186 were from Hyderabad.

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