Arvind Kejriwal today said 441 people from the mosque in Delhi where a religious gathering earlier this month has caused a huge coronavirus scare have shown symptoms linked to the highly contagious virus. Twenty-four people have tested positive for COVID-19, he said, adding that there was a possibility of many more confirmed cases.
Over 1,500 people staying in "Markaz Nizamuddin", the Delhi headquarters of the Tablighi Jamaat group, have been quarantined.
"It was a highly irresponsible act," the Delhi Chief Minister said, adding that of the 97 coronavirus cases in the capital, 24 were from the same mosque complex.
"The world over people are dying and at this time, when all religious places are deserted, they committed such a serious violation."
Close to 2,000 people had been staying at for a gathering organized by the Tablighi Jamaat in March 8-10. Many of them went on to visit different states.
In this case, Mr Kejriwal said, several of those who attended the event went to different parts of the country. "How many people may have been harmed, the very thought scares me," he remarked.
"I appeal to all religious leaders, whatever be one's religion, one's life is most precious."
A police case has been filed against the mosque administration. Several states are trying to track down members who attended the meet and could be vectors for a larger spread.
Members of the Tablighi Jamaat travelled to various parts of the country like Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Kashmir. Members also returned to Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir and Andamans. Six people have died in Telangana and one man died in Srinagar. Ten more, who returned to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, have tested positive. More than 100 people from Kashmir attended the gathering and a massive exercise is on to track them down.