Bihar court fines 9 Bangladesh nationals for violating lockdown provisions
A group of five Malaysian nationals have approached Supreme Court seeking directions to Bihar government to withdraw a case filed against them for alleged violation of the Foreigners Act .Updated: Oct 17, 2020, 16:10 IST
A Samastipur court in Bihar awarded Rs 5000 penalty to nine Bangladesh nationals for violating the lockdown imposed by the government to contain the spread of coronavirus. This is the first conviction in the state for the violation of the lockdown order, police claimed.
Chief judicial magistrate of Samastipur Akansha Kashyap ordered that the accused pay a fine of Rs 5,000 each or serve 30 days in prison. On April 15, the Samastipur police arrested a local leader of Tablighi Jamaat and nine Bangladeshi nationals who had been putting up at his residence in Dharampura. Ishteyaq was arrested on charges of harbouring and giving illegal shelter to foreigners despite the increasing number of coronavirus cases in the state.
The case was lodged on the basis of sub-inspector S Ansari’s statement. Samastipur superintendent of police (SP) Bikash Burman said this was perhaps the first case of conviction for violating the lockdown order. The conviction will send a stern message to people who are still not adhering to restriction orders and venturing out unnecessarily, he claimed.
“The foreign nationals had come to India on February 27 on tourist visas but were involved in religious activities,” he added.
Public prosecutor Dinesh Kumar Dubey told HT that all the accused, identified as, Mizanur Rehman, Abul Basar, Raihanul Islam, Imdadul Haque, Mahfuzur Rehman, Rubel Sarkar, Al Amin, Nesar Ahmad and Sheikh Torab—accepted their guilt before the court and paid the fine.
So far, 57 foreign nationals, including 17 from Indonesia, 14 from Malaysia, 16 from Kyrgyzstan, nine from Bangladesh and one from Kazakhstan were arrested and sent to judicial custody in Patna, Buxar, Araria and Kishanganj districts during lockdown.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the plea of five Malaysians, who attended Tablighi Jamaat congregation, seeking withdrawal of cases lodged against them by Bihar government for alleged violation of Foreigners Act.
The foreigners stated that they had entered India on a valid tourist visa on March 6-7, 2020 and subsequently after attending the Tablighi congregation at Nizamuddin on March 10-13, they had proceeded to Kishanganj and Araria districts. On April 12 and 14, they were booked for violations of provisions of foreigners act and thereafter arrested by the Bihar police in Kishanganj and Araria districts.