Asaduddin Owaisi steps up in defence of Markaz Nizamuddin event, says wrong to blame Muslims for COVID-19 spike

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Updated: April 2, 2020 1:03:52 PM

Defending the organisers of abligh Jammat congregation, Asaduddin Owaisi he said the day the event began, the Health Ministry had said that coronavirus was "not a health emergency".

Asaduddin Owaisi said Tabligh Jammat congregation is being exploited to “blame all the Muslims” for the rising COVID-19 cases.

All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Musilmeen (AIMIM) leader Asaduddin Owaisi has slammed the alleged communalisation over the Markaz Nizamuddin incident that has apparently derailed the fight against coronavirus. According to Owaisi, the Tabligh Jammat congregation, which was attended by thousands of people including foreigners, is being exploited to “blame all the Muslims” for the rising COVID-19 cases.

Defending the organisers, he said the day the event began, the Health Ministry had said that coronavirus was “not a health emergency”.

“Communalising our fight against COVID19 is a shameful act. Tablighi Jamaat incident is being exploited to blame all Muslims for COVID19. Tablighi Jamaat congregation began on 13th March and the Health Ministry had said on the same day that Coronavirus is not a health emergency,” the Hyderabad MP said in a video tweet.

He said no country is relating it to religion and went on to blame the media for linking it to a specific religion. “Why did the Parliament not close (on March 13)?” he asked.

He also slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call to clap and clang thaalis in a bid to express gratitude to health workers on the day of Janata curfew. “Thousands of people were on the road, clapping and banging thalis. But you turned a blind eye to this,” Owaisi said.

“We are not denying this, people visited different states from Delhi (Nizamuddin gathering), but blaming Islam is wrong,” he said.

Meanwhile, a case has been registered by the Delhi Police against Maulana Saad and other officials of Tablighi Jamaat for violating the government’s orders to prevent the spread of virus. Police said Sections under the Epidemic Disease Act,1897 and Section 269, 270, 271 and 120-B of the IPC have been invoked.

According to the Health Minister data, the number of COVID-19 cases climbed to 1,965 in the country on Thursday while the death toll rose to 50.

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