10 Indonesians who tested positive met scores of people after Tablighi meet
New Delhi, Apr 03: Alarm bells are ringing in Telangana after 10 religious preachers from Indonesia tested positive for the novel coronavirus. These persons had taken part in the Tablighi Jamaat meet at Nizamuddin and reached Ramagundem in Telangana on March 13 by the AP Sampark Kranti Express before testing positive.
All of them were shifted a hospital in Hyderabad by the rapid response team on March 16. By this time they had visited a Mosque in Karimnagar and met with 100s of people.
Though the 10 had tested positive by March 20, it was only on March 30 that the state government asked the public to come forward and inform the health department if they had taken part in the meet at Nizamuddin.
The first time the connection between the Tablighi Jamaat and coronavirus emerged was on March 17 2020. It was at this time that a case was detected in Telangana and by March 21, the Ministry of Home Affairs had drawn up a list of 800 foreigners associated with the Tablighi Jamaat.
It was learnt that an Indonesian, who attended the conference at Nizamuddin and travelled to Telangana had tested positive on March 17. Home Ministry sources tell OneIndia that nearly 1,000 Tablighi workers from abroad were in India. Of this around 200 were staying in Nizamuddin, the source also said.
The source also said that once they had identified the 800 foreign nationals, an advisory was sent to all the states to track them and medically screen them. The MHA says that nationals of Indonesia, Malaysia, Nepal, Thailand, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Kyrgyzstan had come for proselytising activities.
The MHA says that so far 1,203 Tablighi Jamaat workers had been screened of which 303 had symptoms of COVID-19. The MHA in a statement said that the Bureau of Immigration has been sharing since February 1 with State authorities, details of all international arrivals from affected countries based on Self Declaration Form filled in by them. In addition, since March 6, Bureau of Immigration had also been sharing details of all the international arrivals (both Indians and foreigners) at all the international airports in the country.
Meanwhile the government has decided to blacklist all the foreigners who attended the Tablighi Jamaat event at Nizamuddin for violation of visa rules. Nearly 800 will be blacklisted, government sources have confirmed. Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla said that all those who travelled to India on tourist visas recently and violated visa conditions will be proceeded against legally. This would include being blacklisted as well, he said.