Kerala HC initiates contempt case against Popular Front of India for hartal after NIA arrests

Kerala HC initiates contempt case against Popular Front of India for hartal after NIA arrests

The Kerala High Court today initiated a case on its own against leaders of the Popular Front of India (PFI); over calls for a day-long strike in the state to protest against raids on and the arrest of over 100 of its top leaders. Pointing out that forced shutdowns were banned by it earlier. The court asked the Kerala government to take strict action against those who violated its order. The Kerala High Court had in January said that nobody can call for a protest shutdown in the state without a prior notice of seven days.

Home Minister Araga Jnanendra has said the process to ban PFI has already started.

In Karnataka, state Home Minister Araga Jnanendra has said the process to ban PFI has already started. State police had searched 18 places yesterday and 15 people were picked up for questioning; he said, adding that seven people were arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA). Formed in 2006, the PFI claims to work for the empowerment of marginalised communities in India. It advocates for the rights of Dalits, Muslims, and tribals. Law enforcement agencies, however, say PFI is promoting radical Islam and recruiting for terror outfits. PFI came under the scanner of central agencies after its members chopped off the hand of a college professor in Kerala for allegedly hurting religious sentiments.

The NIA on Thursday morning raided the premises linked to PFI in several states. Over 100 top PFI leaders and functionaries have been arrested during raids in 10 states, including in Uttar Pradesh, Kerala; Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu. The raids were carried out by the NIA, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), and state police in a coordinated move. The group had called for a dawn-to-dusk strike in Kerala on Friday to mark their protest.

deccannews

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