It has been two weeks since the ugly Tablighi Jamaat fiasco came out in public, yet the mess created by its trans-national congregation at the Alami Markaz Banglewali Masjid in the Nizamuddin area of South Delhi- the global centre for Tablighi Network, has not been contained till now.
More than 350 Tablighi Jamaat missionaries who had gathered in Nalanda last month in a congregation on lines of the Nizamuddin Markaz meeting have gone missing, which has created a ticking time bomb out of the state of Bihar.
8,000 Tablighi Jamaat missionaries had gathered in the Nizamuddin Markaz, which created the single biggest cluster Coronavirus cluster right in the heart of the National Capital. Then Tablighi Jamaat missionaries started wandering across the country creating innumerable hotspots on the way.
Having already slipped India under the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Tablighi Jamaat has now taken out its biggest weapon- the victim card, something that doesn’t come as a surprise for us in India.
According to an SCMP report, the fundamentalist Muslim organisation Tablighi Jamaat has now insisted that it is being unfairly blamed for spreading the Wuhan virus across the country.
The Islamic missionary group has now started tarnishing India’s image with the global media, after the fugitive head of the Nizamuddin Markaz, Muhammad Saad Kandhalvi was charged with Culpable Homicide not amounting to Murder under Section 304 of the Indian Penal Code.
Mohammad Ashraf, a Delhi-based Tablighi has said, “We are being targeted as if Indians are getting infected only because of us.” He also claims that the fundamentalist Islamic organisation is a victim of media “propaganda” and that it would contest the charges against the Maulana Saad in Court.
While the Tablighi Jamaat is playing victim, more than 1.080 out of the 1,707 cases in Delhi itself are connected with the Tablighi Jamaat gathering at its Nizamuddin Markaz.
Not just Delhi, Tablighi Jamaat has caused a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases in every single part of India. In fact, 640 out of 700 cases in Telangana are associated with the Tablighi Jamaat, while most of the 572 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the neighbouring state of Andhra Pradesh are related to the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in South Delhi’s Nizamuddin.
Moreover, most of the cases in Tamil Nadu are also attributable to single source (read “Tablighi Jamaat”), and as of April 14 itself 1,079 of the 1,267 cases in the state were traced as the attendees of the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi or their contacts.
25,500 people connected to the gathering have been quarantined and one can only image how much more damage the Tablighi Jamaat might cause to India, insofar the Coronavirus Pandemic is concerned.
But Mohammad Ashraf says, “We (Tablighi Jamaat) are law-abiding citizens, not criminals,” but needless to mention his statement doesn’t find much corroboration at an empirical level.
To be precise, Tablighi Jamaat has faced allegations of terror links in the past, although the missionary group maintains that is an apolitical, revivalist missionary. It has never directly promoted global jihadism even though terror suspects or attackers have been time and again directly or indirectly involved with the Jamaat.
Even after the Tablighi Jamaat conference in Delhi whose repercussions were felt across the country, the Jamaat did not really act like a set of “law-abiding” citizens.
Tablighi Jamaat missionaries were found spitting all over the place, deliberately trying to infect health workers- nurses and doctors. In fact, its cadres went into hiding across several parts of the country and when the police personnel went searching for them, the police were mobbed and attacked with stones.
In Bihar’s Madhubani things had gone even a a step further as stones got replaced with bullets when a police party proceeded towards a Mosque where a Jamaat had been organised and a large number of people associated with the Tablighi Jamaat were in hiding.
There have been a number of cases of doctors and police personnel getting infected when they tried to rescue the Tablighi Jamaat missionaries. What kind of law-abiding citizens hide their travel history and attack police personnel who come to their rescue?
Other shocking cases include Tablighi Jamaat cadres distributing sweets on their way back home in differnt Uttar Pradesh, towns after attending the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Delhi’s Nizamuddin in a bid to infect others travellers.
Whatever the Tablighi Jamaat did right from organising the trans-national conference to spitting at health workers and mobbing the police and doctors, is a chain of some nasty crimes. Even worse, Tablighi Jamaat has also gone ahead misbehaving with nurses and passing lewd gestures at them.
Now that Tablighi Jamaat is facing outrage, it is trying play victim instead. Having realised that it has no way out, Tablighi Jamaat is trying to tarnish India’s image before the global media.