A Delhi court Saturday directed police to release the passports of 35 foreigners, who were acquitted last December in a case in which they were chargesheeted for attending the Tablighi Jamaat congregation by allegedly disobeying government guidelines issued in the wake of the pandemic. The court’s directions came after the investigating officer submitted he has no objection to releasing the passports.
Advocate Ashima Mandla, appearing for the foreigners, submitted that lookout circulars issued against them were closed earlier this month.
The applications, moved through Mandla and Mandakini Singh, sought release of passports which were in police custody. The pleas noted that the Supreme Court had on January 13 directed the government to facilitate the return of the acquitted foreigners to their respective countries.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar Garg, in the order, said: “… considering the facts that accused have… been acquitted by the court vide judgment dated December 15, 2020, non-filing of appeal/revision by state against judgment dated December 12, 2020, of this court till date, and that LOC(s) qua the applicant(s) have already been closed by DCP pursuant to directions of Supreme Court of India, the application of present applicant(s) is disposed off with directions to release original passport(s) of applicant(s) to applicant(s) or his/her (their) attorney against proper acknowledgement as per rules, after verification of his/her (their) identity.”
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