PFI state general secretary Abdul Sathar, in a statement, slammed the use of the “state machinery” and claimed that Central agencies were being used to “silence the dissenting voices”.
PFI chairman O M A Salam, national secretary Nasaruddin Elamaram and Kerala unit president C P Mohammed Basheer were among the organization leaders arrested by Central agencies during a nationwide swoop Thursday.
The PFI called for a dawn-to-dusk blockade in Kerala Friday.
PFI state general secretary Abdul Sathar, in a statement, slammed the use of the “state machinery” and claimed that Central agencies were being used to “silence the dissenting voices”. The arrest of PFI national and state leaders, wasn’t justified said Sathar. The BJP, on the other hand, urged the CPM-led state government to take sombre action against those calling for the blockade and ensure normal life on Friday.
K Surendran BJP State president said, “The PFI should not think that it can confront terrorism cases with muscle power. The state government is soft on PFI to appease a vote bank.”
Protesting the searches and arrests Thursday, PFI workers took to the streets across Kerala and stalled movement of vehicles, demanding that the NIA and ED stop their action. Hundreds of PFI workers gathered near the organization’s premises, raising slogans against the Union government and the Sangh Parivar.
In the year 2020, ED had searched the premises of PFI chairman Salam who had worked in the state electricity board’s audit section.
The PFI’s engrossment mostly has been in Kerala where it has been repeatedly accused of murder, rioting, intimidation and links with terror organizations.
In 2012, the Kerala government, then headed by Oommen Chandy of the Congress, had informed the High Court that the PFI was “nothing but a resurrection of the banned outfit Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) in another form”. In an affidavit, The involvement of the PFI activists in 27 cases of murder, mostly of CPM and RSS cadres, and that the motives were communal said the government.
The affidavit reiterated that workers of the PFI and its predecessor, National Development Front (NDF), were involved in 27 cases of communally motivated murders, 86 cases of attempt to murder, and 106 cases of communal nature in the state.