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Jakarta Post

Indonesia repatriates 122 more Tablighi Jamaat members from India

  • Alya Nurbaiti

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, September 17, 2020   /   08:30 pm
Indonesia repatriates 122 more Tablighi Jamaat members from India Health officials conduct a COVID-19 rapid test on a member of the Tablighi Jamaat congregation in Kedu, Temanggung, Central Java, on April 20. (Antara/Anis Efizudin)

The government has repatriated another 122 Indonesian members of the global Islamic missionary movement Tablighi Jamaat who were stranded in India after attending an Islamic gathering during the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi said on Thursday.

“On Wednesday, the Indonesian Embassy in New Delhi sent off 122 Indonesians. Thank God, they have arrived safely in Jakarta today [Thursday],” Retno said during a press briefing in her office.

With the latest repatriation, a total of 515 Indonesian Tablighi Jamaat members have returned home, more than 60 percent of the 751 Indonesian pilgrims who have become stranded in 12 states in the South Asia country, according to the ministry’s data.

Retno said repatriating the pilgrims amid the pandemic was not an easy matter.

“The repatriation of 122 Indonesian citizens is the result of various efforts made by the teams in New Delhi and Mumbai, as well as between capitals [New Delhi and Jakarta] so that our brothers and sisters can return to Indonesia,” she said, adding that she had asked the Indian foreign minister to continue assisting the repatriation process of the remaining Indonesian Tablighi Jamaat members.

As reported previously, 436 Indonesian members of the group stood trial in India for violating the country’s immigration and quarantine policies. Last month, the ministry reported that as many as 431 Indonesians had accepted the court's ruling and been required to pay penalties ranging from 5,000 Indian rupees (US$67.89) to 10,000 rupees.