Delhi minorities panel seeks probe into death of two Tablighi Jamaat members at Sultanpuri quarantine centre, blames denial of medicine

The Delhi Minorities Commission wrote a letter to Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal requesting a probe into the deaths of two Tablighi Jamaat members kept at a quarantine centre in the city’s Sultanpuri area

FP Staff April 26, 2020 10:56:40 IST
Delhi minorities panel seeks probe into death of two Tablighi Jamaat members at Sultanpuri quarantine centre, blames denial of medicine

The Delhi Minorities Commission wrote a letter to Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal requesting a probe into the death of two Tablighi Jamaat members kept at a quarantine centre in the city’s Sultanpuri area, according to several media reports.

Delhi minorities panel seeks probe into death of two Tablighi Jamaat members at Sultanpuri quarantine centre blames denial of medicine

Several people who attended the Tablighi Jamaat event in March. PTI

60-year-old Mohamed Mustafa died on 22 April at the quarantine centre, Firstpost reported. Ten days before Mustafa's demise, Haji Rizwan passed away. Both the men were from Tamil Nadu and were diabetic. “Both died due to denial of diabetic medicines and erratic food supply,” the letter read, as per The Quint report. They had attended the Markaz event in Nizamuddin organized by Tablighi Jamaat.

Commission chairperson Zafarul-Islam Khan and member Kartar Singh Kochhar said in the letter that the deaths were a result of “callous and uncooperative nature of officers and doctors” manning and supervising these camps as well as the “erratic supply of food at these facilities.”

The letter also stated Tablighi Jamaat members have been kept at quarantine centres in Sultanpuri, Narela and Dwarka and include people from India and abroad, adding that, “They include elderly people with health issues who require special care and medical attention.”

The commission also alleged that many of the people in the quarantine facility have been there for about 25 days, more than the  prescribed 14 days, but are still not being allowed to leave The Wire reported. “The vast majority tested negative, but some of those who tested positive are also kept in the same facilities. Of 21 positive cases of Jamaat people at Sultanpuri camp, only around 4 to 5 were reportedly taken to hospitals,” the letter stated.

The minorities panel also alleged that those at the quarantine facility were being “inhumanely treated”. “Breakfasts  are served at 11 am and dinner at 10 or 11 pm. The food is hardly edible. As a result, people are having stomach problems and some are vomiting. Medical facilities and medicines are not provided while some of the inmates are diabetic and heart patients. Doctors rarely visit the patients. Inmates are not given necessary and life-saving medicines,” the letter further stated as per the report.

It added that the deaths were reported while the persons were under government care and that ‘therefore the “government was responsible for their safekeeping and welfare during their detention”. The commission demanded that in view of fasting by Muslims during Ramzan “the timing of supply of food to them must also change and meticulously followed to suit fasting timing.”

The Tablighi Jamaat event, held early in March, became a coronavirus hotspot, with the health ministry saying on 5 April that doubling rate of cases in India rose to 4.1 days from the estimated 7.4 days due to the religious gathering. Over 25,000 Tablighi Jamaat members and their contacts were quarantined in the country after the Centre and the states launched a massive operation to trace them.

With inputs from PTI

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