New Delhi: Radical Islamist outfit Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) has opposed the ban on Islamic terrorist outfit Popular Front of India (PFI).
In a statement to the media, the JIH President Syed Sadatullah Husaini said: “Jamaat-e-Islami Hind expresses disagreement over the government’s decision to ban the Popular Front of India (PFI) and its affiliates. Banning an organisation is neither a solution nor does it suit a democratic society. The culture of banning the organisations is in itself a clear violation of the fundamental rights protected by the Constitution and goes against the democratic spirit and basic civil liberties. People may have differences with these organisations, their policies and the rhetoric.”
“We have also always opposed them on several counts but that is not the reason to ban an organisation and harass its cadres. It is the duty of the police and administration to maintain law and order in the country. If any individual breaks the law or commits any crime the individual can be prosecuted and dealt as per the provisions of law,” the JIH president added.
“The courts will decide about allegations against them, where those individuals will also have a chance to prove their innocence. However, to ban an entire organization on flimsy and unsubstantiated grounds, is unjustified and undemocratic. Recently, we have witnessed many fringe and radical groups openly indulging in hate-mongering and calling for violence. These groups are operating with impunity and no action is being taken against them whatsoever. Hence, the ban appears selective, discriminatory, and biased. It will increase the trust deficit between people and the government and send a wrong message to the country. We demand that the ban be revoked at the earliest,” he added.
The Central Government on Tuesday 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,” said the government notification.
Jamaat-e-Islami, which came out in support of PFI is an Islamist outfit founded by Maulana Maudidi, an Islamic extremist who promoted Jihad against non-Muslims. JeI founded Maududi had influenced several Islamic terrorists like Hassan al-Banna and Sayyid Qutb.
Notably, the Jamaat-e-Islami is the predecessor of PFI. The banned Islamic terrorist outfit SIMI, which was founded as students’ wing of Jamaat-e-Islami, had transformed into National Development Front (NDF). The NDF later became the Popular Front of India (PFI).
In 2019, the Centre had banned the Jamat-e-Islami Jammu and Kashmir for five years under anti-terror law on grounds that it was “in close touch” with militant outfits and is expected to “escalate secessionist movement” in the state.