More trouble for Maulana Saad Kandhalvi, money laundering case filed

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More trouble for Maulana Saad Kandhalvi, money laundering case filed
More trouble for Maulana Saad Kandhalvi, money laundering case filed

New Delhi : The Enforcement Directorate on Thursday filed a money laundering case against maulana Saad Kandhalvi, the chief of the Islamic group Tablighi Jamaat that organised a religious congregation in Delhi last month setting off India's biggest cluster of coronavirus cases.

Earlier, the police had filed charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder against the Tabilighi Jamaat leader for holding the gathering last month at its "Markaz" or headquarters in Delhi's Nizamuddin.

The Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) against Maulana Saad and trusts linked to the Jamaat and others was filed by the agency based on a Delhi Police case.

The ED officials mentioned that they are investigating the financial transactions of the Tablighi Jamaat and its officebearers, reported PTI. 

The agency is also taking note of the donations received from domestic and international sources by the organization.

A summon is likely to be issued to Maulana Saad, who is reportedly in self-quarantine these days. The agency, they said, is also looking at the opinion of medical experts about his claim of self-quarantine amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the mid-March, the police had sealed Markaz and sent thousands of followers, including foreign nationals from Indonesia, Malaysia and Bangladesh, to quarantine. 

The police had initially filed a case against Maulana Saad Kandhalvi for violating a ban on big gatherings.

"Delhi police had filed a first information report earlier against the Tablighi chief, now section 304 has been added," an officer said, referring to culpable homicide in the penal code, which carries a maximum punishment of a 10-year prison term.

More than 25,500 Tablighi members and their contacts have been quarantined in the country after the centre and the state governments conducted a massive operation to trace them.

India's tally of coronavirus infections has since jumped over 13,000, including more than 400 deaths, as of Thursday.