Thiruvananthapuram: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on December 29 carried out raids at 56 locations in Kerala allegedly linked with the banned terrorist group Popular Front of India. The raids are a part of the probe in connection with the funding of the banned outfit, which is said to have been involved in terrorist activities and money laundering.
The crackdown happened in 56 places across the State mainly inThiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Ernakulam, Alappuzha and Malappuram Districts.
Despite the Union Government’s ban, the outfit is suspected of continuing its operations clandestinely. NIA said that the organisation summoned a meeting at Periyar Valley in Ernakulam, among other places. Discussions were also held in other districts, which were PFI strongholds.
The agency conducted raids at eight places in Ernakulam, four in Alappuzha and Malappuram, and three in Thiruvananthapuram.
The inspections included Chinthoor, Vandanam, Veeyapuram, Ochira in Alappuzha, and Edavanad, Aluva and Vypin areas in Ernakulam Districts.
The house of former PFI state committee member Nissar was also raided.
On September 2022 , the Centre banned PFI for five years under the stringent anti-terror law UAPA, accusing the Islamic outfit of having ‘links’ with global terror groups such as ISIS and trying to spread communal hatred in the country. The ban came into force after a nationwide crackdown on the outfit earlier.
The PFI’s other associates -Rehab India Foundation, Campus Front of India, All India Imams council, National Confederation of Human Rights Organisation, National Women’s Front, Junior Front, Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala- were also placed in the list of organisations outlawed under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
The Islamist organisation was formed on November 9, 2006, in Bengaluru after merging three Islamic organisations–the National Development Front of Kerala, Karnataka Forum for Dignity and Manitha Neethi Pasarai of Tamil Nadu .
The NIA had carried out searches at more than 150 locations across the country against PFI cadres so far this year.