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More people with terror links held in raids on Popular Front across 6 states

Photo for representation

In another major crackdown on the Popular Front of India, investigative agencies on Tuesday along with local police have arrested around 90 people across six states for their alleged links to terrorist activity.

The raids are underway in Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh and Assam are a follow up of the earlier raids carried out on Sept 22 and the number of people arrested has now gone up to 200.

In state-wide raids in Karnataka, more than 75 PFI workers of its political wing (SDPI) and leaders were taken into preventive custody, informed a police official.

“Over 75 leaders and workers of PFI and its political wing Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) have been taken into preventive custody. The police raids are underway across the state. The cases have been booked under sections 108, 151 CrPC,” news agency ANI cited Alok Kumar, ADGP law and order  as saying in Bengaluru.

The police conducted raids in Devanahalli, Bengaluru Rural, Chikkaballapur, Chitradurga, Raichur, Hassan, Bellary, Bagalkot, Koppal and other districts in the state.

Alok Kumar ADGP, Bengaluru said that Mohmad Ismail, Raichur district ex-president of the PFI was also arrested and sent to judicial custody. Three PFI leaders were taken into custody in Mysore while two leaders were arrested in Chamarajanagar. Eight PFI leaders have been taken into custody including the district president in Mangalore.

In Uttar Pradesh, the state’s ATS and the UP Special Task Force took more than a dozen PFI leaders into custody in raids across the state, informed police sources.

Crackdown on the Popular Front of India continued in Maharashtra as the ATS and local police conducted raids in various parts of the state and arrested various persons linked with the organisation.

“Raids by ATS and local police are underway on people associated with PFI in many parts of the state,” said the ATS.

The Thane Police informed that its crime branch has arrested four people associated with PFI.

The Nashik Police also arrested two persons liked with the organisation. Both the arrested persons will be produced before the court later today.

One of the two persons, identified as Mohammed Irfan who, according to the Nashik Police, was earlier booked for holding an illegal rally in May this year. According to local police, there were inputs against some persons, who are connected to PFI, were involved in illegal activities. Raids are underway in Malegaon town also.

The NIA had arrested over 106 members of the PFI during its largest-ever raids spread across 15 states.

According to the charge-sheet filed by the ED, PFI has formed committees in UAE, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and other places to raise funds. Targets are given to individuals to collect cash and transfer the same through Hawala or camouflaged as genuine business transactions.

Searches were conducted at multiple locations in the largest ever investigation process till date.

The operation started late in the night around 1 am and concluded by 5 am involving over 1,500 personnel of state police, Central Armed Police Forces and officers of NIA and ED.

Several incriminating documents, more than 100 mobile phones, laptops and other materials have been seized by the raiding teams.

These searches were conducted at the residential and official premises of persons involved in “funding terrorism, organising training camps and radicalising people to join proscribed organisations”.

The PFI was launched in Kerala in 2006 after merging three Muslim organizations floated after the Babri Masjid demolition in 1992. It then spread its wings to other states such as Tamil Nadu.