After objections raised by The Students Islamic Organisation, a reference book for second year MBBS course in Maharashtra, was removed as some contents in the book linked the Tablighi Jamaat’s congregation in New Delhi last year to the outbreak of coronavirus. The authors of the third edition of the book titled ‘Essentials of Medical Microbiology’ also tendered an apology in this connection, and assured that necessary changes will be made in the new edition of the book.
The objections were raised on the grounds that there is no epidemiological study that establishes Covid-19 spread was accelerated because of the congregation of Tablighi Jamaat.
The propaganda pushed by the media that the Tablighi Jamaat congregation was responsible for the spread of Covid-19 was proven to be false when the many cases filed against them were, one by one, dismissed by courts either by stating that majority of them were eventually tested negative, or on the ground that no case was made out against them and they were merely seeking refuge in mosques owing to the suddenly announced nationwide lockdown.
About a year after 11 state governments also filed 205 FIRs against 2,765 foreign nationals for allegedly violating visa terms and intentionally disregarding Covid-19 guidelines, not one member of the Tablighi Jamaat, a back-to-roots Islamic movement, has been convicted by any court. An analysis of these multiple orders, reveals that the Courts have not just bailed out Tablighi members, but have seriously questioned the charges invoked against them, quashing the cases filed against them are slowly emerging.
Bebaak Collective published a report Communalisation of Covid-19 highlighting that Muslims were quickly equated with the ‘virus’ and the ‘disease’ itself, and feared, hated and contained. The report covers seven states of northern, western and central India documents the synchronised working of the media, police and state authorities as the primary force which allowed for the discrimination, violence and exclusion faced by Muslims during the pandemic.
A petition was also filed before the Supreme Court against the communalisation of Covid-19 by the news media, and the narrative that ran with it. The case is pending before the court.
Will a vile electronic media pay for vilification of the Tablighi Jamaat?
Clean chit to Tablighi Jamaat, too little, too late?
Tablighi Jamaat reportage: SC seeks clarity on Centre’s power under Cable TV Act