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Tablighi Jamaat: Delhi HC transfers cases against foreign nationals to Saket district court

ANI | Updated: Aug 12, 2020 01:51 IST

New Delhi [India], Aug 12 (ANI): The Delhi High Court on Tuesday transferred the various cases against foreign nationals, who are members of Tablighi Jamaat, to Saket district court.
Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani directed that the chargesheets filed in different matters, which are mentioned in the eight petitions to be transferred from different lower courts to the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate South-East Delhi, Saket district court. The court has directed that the matter should be dealt expeditiously as per the law.

The High Court said that three petitions pertaining to three FIRs to Police Station Bara Hindu Rao, Sarai Rohilla and Sadar Bazar wherein Metropolitan Magistrate declined cognisance, have been kept pending for instructions on behalf of the state before disposing the same. The Delhi government standing counsel for criminal matters, advocate Rahul Mehra has sought time to seek instructions on this regard.
The petitioners were represented by Senior Advocate Rebecca M John, along with lawyers Ashima Mandla and Mandakini Singh.
Appearing for Union of India, advocates Ajay Digpaul, Anil Soni and Anurag Ahluwalia said that Look Out Circulars (LoC) were opened by the Bureau of Immigration, Ministry of Home Affairs, at the request of Delhi Police. Once the criminal cases are closed, the government will have no problem in closing LoC and facilitating the petitioners in leaving the country, the advocates said.

A bench of Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani of Delhi High Court had asked the respondent/ Delhi Police to file a status report and prepare a consolidated chart for all FIRs against all Tablighi Jamaat members.
The petitioners had told the court that the foreign nationals have been charged in these FIRs under the same sections as in FIR registered at PS crime branch in Markaj matter, for which majority of them entered plea bargaining and paid fines. Now, when the time for their deportation has come, they are unable to fly back due to additional FIRs, the petitioners said.
The petitioners have sought quashing of additional FIRs registered at different police station under various sections of Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Epidemic Diseases Act.
In the case being probed by Crime Branch, the foreign national petitioners have duly entered plea bargaining and consequent deportation orders have been issued by the court.
They said that the FIRs before this court are similar to the FIR of Crime Branch, in which 911 of the 955 foreigner jamaatis have concluded plea bargaining.

"Under law, second FIR is impermissible and there is an operational bar from prosecution of same offences arising out of the corresponding cause of action under Article 20(2) of the constitution of India (widely known as doctrine of double jeopardy) as well as section 300 of the CrPC," the petitioners had said earlier. (ANI)