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PFI Crackdown Round 2: Sympathisers as Target, Agencies Foil 'East Delhi Type Riots' Plan | Exclusive – News18

By: Manoj Gupta
Edited By: Manjiri Joshi
Last Updated: September 27, 2022, 17:19 IST
New Delhi, India
Police personnel during a raid of NIA at the residence of a functionary of PFI in Madurai on Sept 22.(Image: PTI)
The round two of the national crackdown of the Popular Front of India (PFI) – so far, raids across seven states have led to 270 arrests – on Tuesday is to arrest those involved in mobilising sympathy for the terror outfit, intelligence sources told CNN-News18.
At least 74 people have been arrested in Karnataka, 47 in Maharashtra and three in Mumbai, among others. The agencies are cracking down on not just the cadre, but even those linked to the PFI in any way, said officials.
Earlier on September 22, a multi-agency operation spearheaded by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) had led to the arrest of 106 leaders and activists of the radical Islamic outfit in near simultaneous raids in 15 states for allegedly supporting terror activities in the country.
After the first round of raids, the PFI was planning riots and communal tension, riding on the sympathy wave, said sources. One group was involved in mass mobilisation to gain international sympathy and calls were made for legal assistance. These groups seem political, but they have terror links and wanted a repeat of the riots like in East Delhi, said sources.
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PFI is a fundamentalist Islamist organisation founded in 2006 with the merger of few regional Islamist groups namely National Development Front (NDF), Manitha Neethi Pasarai and Karnataka Forum for Dignity (KFD).
According to intelligence sources, the PFI runs three front organisations — India Fraternity Forum (IFF), Indian Social Forum (ISF) and Rehab Indian Foundation (RIF) in Gulf Countries.
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The PFI trained the cadre to respond violently to anti-Muslim organisations and individuals.
CNN-News18 had accessed the criminal records of the PFI leaders, which showed their nefarious activities with an intention to destabilise India. The records show the leaders have been actively conspiring with anti-India elements based in Pakistan and the Middle-East, among others.
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Many of its leaders were earlier members of the banned outfit Students’ Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and Indian Mujahideen. The Pakistani establishment has been extremely active in using the diaspora linked with the PFI for fund transfer.
"Some outfits are trying to create unrest": BJP Minister Ajay Mishra Teni tells News18's Pawan Gaur on #PFICrackdown@GrihaAtul | #PFIRaids #PFI
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The PFI was behind the chopping of a professor’s hand in Kerala for hurting Islamic sentiments. It was also observed that some PFI-linked individuals joined the Islamic State conflict theatre in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, while some others were arrested in different IS-related cases in India.
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The PFI tried to mask its instigations with its frontal organisation, Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI), and its participation in democratic process.
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About the Author
Manoj Gupta is Group Editor, Security Affairs at CNN-News18Read More
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