Pakur (Jharkhand): A named FIR has been lodged against 12 leaders of the banned Popular Front of India (PFI) in Jharkhand on the charges of illegal and anti-national activities, police said on February 27, according to PTI.
The FIR was also lodged against 60 unidentified cadres of the PFI with the Muffasil police station of Pakur district on February 25.
The FIR followed a police raid on a PFI office in Chandrapada village on February 22. They seized several flags of the organisation, banners, pamphlets, computers and CDs among other things.
The Jharkhand government banned the organisation on February 21 for its alleged links with terrorist group Islamic State. The state government had said that some members of the group had gone to Syria and worked with the IS.
Popular Front of India has stated that the banning of the organization by the BJP Government of Jharkhand is an attempt to eliminate the kind of activism the organization has demonstrated in the state through legal and democratic means against the fascist forces and their government agencies
Among others, the named FIR has been lodged against Abdul Badud, general secretary of the organisation, Abdul Hanan, district secretary, Pakur unit, Habibur Rahman, member of state unit and Shamim Akhtar, secretary of the state unit, they said.
The PFI website says that rallies were held all across India in protest.
“Peoples protest rallies were held across India protesting against the ban of Popular Front of India in Jharkhand by the state government. Popular Front activists and general public including women participated in demonstrations held in various states, including Manipur, West Bengal, Bihar, Assam, New Delhi, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Goa, Karnataka, Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
In the national capital New Delhi hundreds of people including women participated in the Jharkhand Bhawan March. The protesters raised slogans demanding the withdrawal of the ban imposed by Jharkhand government and an immediate end to the police harassment in the state. Zonal secretary Anis Ansari, State President Parvez Ahmed and SDPI National General Secretary Muhammed Shafi addressed the rally. A delegation of leaders of the organisation met the officer on duty and handed over the memorandum addressed to Jharkhand Chief Minister and Governor. He assured the delegation that the matter would be brought to the attention of Chief Minister and an appointment of the Chief Minister is sought to discuss the matter.
In a statement Popular Front General Secretary M Muhammed Ali Jinnah appreciated the solidarity of the masses which was expressed through protest demonstrations across the country . He further stated that the voices of the people raised against undemocratic move of Jharkhand government is a warning to the forces that are behind targeting Popular Front of India.