New Delhi, December 15: A Delhi court Tuesday acquitted 36 foreigners, who were charge sheeted for attending a Tablighi Jamaat congregation here by allegedly being negligent and disobeying the government guidelines issued in wake of COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar Garg acquitted the foreigners from 14 countries of all charges, news agency PTI reported.

The court had on August 24 framed charges against the foreigners under sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 269 (negligent act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 3 (disobeying regulation) of Epidemic Act, 1897.

The charges were also framed under section 51 (obstruction) Disaster Management Act, 2005.

However, they were discharged for the offences under section 14 (1) (b) (violation of visa norms) of Foreigners Act, sections 270 (Malignant act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) and 271 (Disobedience to quarantine rule) of IPC.

The court had also discharged eight foreign nationals from six countries of all charges under which they were charge sheeted in the absence of any record or any credible material against them.

The foreigners were charge sheeted for attending Tablighi Jamaat congregation here at Nizamuddin area allegedly in violation of visa norms, indulging in missionary activities illegally and violating government guidelines issued in the wake of COVID-19 outbreak.

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