Home / News / NIA reveals codename of pan-India crackdown on PFI members

The largest-ever crackdown that was conducted by NIA against the Popular Front of India (PFI) members spread across 15 states was code-named "Operation Octopus," news agency ANI reported

The joint teams of the National Investigative Agency (NIA) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) arrested over 106 PFI members in multiple raids spread across several states on September 22. The NIA and Enforcement Directorate conducted raids in 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 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 have been registered in different states over the last few years against the PFI. The news agency said that criminal violent acts "carried out" by PFI include chopping off the hand of a college professor, cold-blooded killings of persons associated with organisations espousing other faiths, collection of explosives to target prominent people and places, support for Islamic State and destruction of public property.

After the crackdown, the PFI on Friday called for a 12-hour shutdown in Kerala, which turned violent in parts of the state. Stones were pelted at various places, including at the RSS office at Mattannur in Kannur. Two police officials were also injured in the incident in Kollam.

Meanwhile, PFI on Thursday, while condemning the raids by the NIA and the ED against its leaders, stated that it will "never surrender" and alleged that the agency's claims are aimed at "creating an atmosphere of terror".

"NIA's baseless claims and sensationalism are solely aimed at creating an atmosphere of terror. Popular Front will never surrender to any scary action by a totalitarian regime using the central agencies as its puppets and will stand firm on its will for recovering the democratic system and spirit of the constitution of our beloved country," PFI said in a statement.

All India Muslim Jamaat president Maulana Shahabuddin Razvi on Friday called upon the Muslim community to stay away from the Popular Front of India (PFI) calling it a "radical group" and urged the central government to impose a ban on it.

Maulana Razvi welcomed the arrest of the PFI leaders across the country.

"PFI is a radical organisation. Its members follow a radicalised ideology. I would appeal to all Sufi and Sunni Muslims to stay away from this organisation. The PFI has been named in many incidents across the country. There must be a ban on these kinds of organisations," said Razvi.

On the contrary, slamming the Centre over the National Investigation Agency's nationwide crackdown against the Popular Front of India, Muslim cleric Maulana Sajid Rashidi on Friday dubbed it a "conspiracy to finish Muslims".

He claimed that attempts were made to "ban" PFI.

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