Hyderabad: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) conducted searches at multiple places in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana on Sunday as part of a significant crackdown on the Popular Front of India (PFI), source said.
Raids were carried out at the suspects' homes and workplaces in Kurnool, Nellore, Kadapa, Guntur, and Nizamabad in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
As per sources info, the NIA investigators searched more than twenty locations belonging to several PFI leaders.
Special teams landed at the APHB community area in Nizamabad and searched Shahid Chaush alias Shahid's home. Under Section 41(A) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, he has received a notice (CrPc). It has been found that the agency investigation is predicated on finding and identifying the sources of terrorism.
On August 26, the Hyderabad branch of the NIA opened a case related to the PFI. In the NIA First Information Report (FIR), 26 persons, including 52-year-old Abdul Khadar of Autonagar, Nizamabad, were charged with conspiring to wage war against the Government of India.
"In pursuance of the criminal conspiracy, they recruited the members of PFI, organised camps for imparting training for committing terrorist acts. They formulated an unlawful assembly and promoted enmity between different groups based on religion and were involved in activities disrupting sovereignty and territorial integrity of India," the FIR says.
The case against Abdul Khader, 26 people, and others was earlier filed by the Nizamabad Police Station in Telangana under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and section 13(1)(b) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in connection with some anti-national activities that took place in a house near the Osmania Masjid in Auto Nagar.
"The Popular Front of India (PFI) Flexi, bamboo sticks, whiteboard, non-chaks, one podium, note-books, handbooks, and other materials were found during the Telangana Police's search of the home. This is similar to a plot to sabotage the Indian government” the FIR says.
According to official sources, during the subsequent investigation, Abdul Khader, the owner of the house, admitted that he had built a portion on the roof of his home and permitted the space to be used for PFI cadre training and meetings in lieu of the financial assistance of Rs 6 lakh promised by some of the PFI accused.
"The PFI members began teaching and organising physical exercise for youth under the guise of Karate courses and used to incite them towards a particular group of people with their hateful comments and other tactics. They organised camps to train people to perform terrorist actions and recruited members of the Popular Front of India (PFI). They recruited the members of the Popular Front of India (PFI), organised camps for imparting training for committing terrorist acts. Later, the Telangana Police amended the UA(P) Act in the case to include sections 18A and 18(B) "a FIR was added.
The Ministry of Home Affairs later turned the case over to the NIA with the belief that a Scheduled Offense under the National Investigation Agency Act, 2008, had been committed and that the agency must conduct an investigation in accordance with the National Investigation Act, 2008, given the gravity of the offence and its implications for national security.
The National Development Front of Kerala, the Karnataka Forum for Dignity, and the Manitha Neethi Pasari of Tamil Nadu, three Muslim organisations that had been created after the 1992 Babri Masjid demolition, were combined to form the PFI, which was introduced in Kerala in 2006. PFI was created after combining some of the fringe organisations that had emerged in south India following the destruction of the Babri mosque.
The PFI now asserts that it has units in 22 states. Intelligence agencies acknowledge its amazing expansion, noting that it was able to take advantage of a community need by acting as a saviour. The effective portrayal of the image aids PFI in raising money, particularly from wealthy middle eastern nations. The PFI's previous administrative centre was in Kozhikode, but after expanding its reach, it was moved to Delhi. Nasaruddin Elamarom, the state president of PFI, is one of the organization's original founders. And E Abubaker, its president for all of India, is a native of Kerala.
The PFI describes itself as a neo-social movement dedicated to empowering members of Dalit communities, minority communities, and other underprivileged groups in society.