NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday sought more clarity from the Centre on whether the visas of blacklisted foreign members of the Tablighi Jamaat had been cancelled and separate orders issued against each of the 2,500 foreigners by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). A three-judge bench headed by Justice A M Khanwilkar asked the Solicitor General to file a response by July 2.
During the hearing, the bench asked that if the visas had been cancelled, then why hadn’t these persons been deported yet.
Thirty-four foreigners belonging to 15 countries, who had attended a religious congregation organised by the Tablighi Jamaat at Nizamuddin in Delhi, had approached the court claiming that no individual orders were issued to them and a general direction was issued to the states directing blacklisting and registration of FIRs.
The petitioners were aggrieved by the MHA’s April 2 decision to blacklist 960 foreigners of 35 countries for participating in the Tablighi Jamaat activities. They were not allowed to travel to India for the next 10 years.
On June 4, MHA further blacklisted 2,500 foreigners currently in India for participating in Tablighi Jamaat events and directed the police chiefs of states and UTs to register FIRs against them.
The petitioners claimed the order was passed without hearing them and it restricts their rights under Article 21. They demanded MHA to remove them from the blacklistand reinstate their visas.