Thu, 08 Dec 2022

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], September 28 (ANI): Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said that by banning the Popular Front of India (PFI), the Government of India has sent out a strong message to all the anti-national groups.

Speaking to mediapersons, Bommai on Wednesday said that ban on the organisation was a long-time demand by the people of the country, by all political parties, including Opposition parties like the CPI, the CPM and the Congress.

"It has been a long-time demand by the country's people, including the Opposition like CPI, CPM and Congress, by all political parties. PFI was involved in anti-national activities, and violence. They had their command outside the country," said Bommai.

"Some of the important office bearers went across the border and had their own training. The time had come to ban this organisation. The Government of India took the right decision. This is a message for all anti-national groups. I urge people not to associate with such organisations: Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai on PFI ban," the chief minister said.

Karnataka BJP MLA KS Eshwarappa has also welcomed the ban and said that every patriotic person irrespective of their religion or party affiliation has welcomed the ban on PFI.

"Today is the birthday of revolutionary Bhagat Singh. Also, goddess Chamundeshwaru is also being worshipped. Today is the third day of Navratri. Amit Shah has banned PFI. People of the entire nation are irrespective of their religion, be it Hindu, Muslim, Christian, or person of any party be it BJP, Congress or any party, everyone have welcomed the decision," Eshwarappa told ANI.

He added, "Every person who is patriotic welcomed the ban. This organisation is getting funding from foreign countries. They have also been involved in terror attacks. They have also allegedly murdered many Hindus."Late on Tuesday, the Central Government declared the Popular Front of India (PFI) and its associates or affiliates or fronts as an unlawful association with immediate effect for a period of five years.

"PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts operate openly as a socio-economic, educational and political organization but, they have been pursuing a secret agenda to radicalize a particular section of the society working towards undermining the concept of democracy and show sheer disrespect towards the constitutional authority and constitutional set up of the country," the government notification had said.

The notification had said that PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts have been indulging in unlawfulactivities, which are prejudicial to the integrity, sovereignty and security of the country and have the potential to disturb public peace and communal harmony of the country and support militancy in the country.

It had further said that some of the PFI's founding members are the leaders of the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and PFI has linkages with Jamat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), both of which are proscribed organisations.

There had been a number of instances of international linkages of PFI with global terrorist groups like the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS); the PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts have been working covertly to increase the radicalization of one community by promoting a sense of insecurity in the country, which is substantiated by the fact that some PFI cadres have joined international terrorist organisations, said the notification.

"The Central Government, having regard to the above circumstances, is of the firm opinion that it is necessary to declare the PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts as an unlawful association with immediate effect, and accordingly, in the exercise of the powers conferred by the proviso to sub-section (3) of section 3 of the said Act, the Central Government hereby directs that this notification shall, subject to any order that may be made under section 4 of the said Act, have effect for a period of five years from the date of its publication in the Official Gazette," it had said.

The National Investigation Agency, Enforcement Directorate and the state police forces jointly coordinated searches at the houses and offices of the PFI leaders and members across India.

Searches were conducted at 93 locations in 15 states of India in which over 100 activists of the Popular Front of India (PFI) were arrested.

The states where the raids were conducted included Andhra Pradesh (4 places), Telangana (1), Delhi (19), Kerala (11), Karnataka (8), Tamil Nadu (3), Uttar Pradesh (1), Rajasthan (2), Hyderabad (5), Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Goa, West Bengal, Bihar and Manipur.

The searches were conducted in connection with five cases registered by the NIA following "continued inputs and evidence" that the PFI leaders and cadres were involved in the funding of terrorism and terrorist activities, organising training camps for providing armed training and radicalising people to join banned organisations.

A large number of criminal cases were registered in different states over the last few years against the PFI and its leaders and members for their involvement in many violent acts. (ANI)

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