The Bengaluru Police on Thursday arrested 14 men for allegedly “plotting” to create communal disturbances, The Indian Express reported. The arrests come in the backdrop of multi-agency raids across India at 93 locations led by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday, where several office-bearers and cadres of the Popular Front of India (PFI) were arrested.
“The case was registered in the wake of credible information that the accused persons were plotting to create communal disturbances,” the Bengaluru police said in an official statement on Friday. Two arrested were from Karnataka’s Bengaluru.
The case was registered at K G Halli police station, and police said that some arrested are history-sheeters with cases of rioting against them.
Cases were registered against the accused under several sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), including Section 121 (waging war against the country), and Section 153A (provocation for rioting at a religious place).
The NIA had carried out searches at multiple places in Karnataka and arrested several top office-bearers of the PFI on Thursday. The seven arrested from Karnataka were Anis Ahmed, Afsar Pasha, Abdul Wahid Sait, Yasar Arafath Hasan, Mohammed Shakib aka Shakif, Muhammed Farooq Ur Rahman and Shahid Nasir, police said.
“PFI leaders and cadres were involved in funding of terrorism and terrorist activities, organising training camps for providing armed training and radicalising people to join banned organisations,” the NIA said following the searches.
Meanwhile, the PFI has called for a state-wide hartal in Kerala from 6 AM-6 PM today to protest the raids and the subsequent arrests. The protests have also caught the eye of the Kerala High Court which has taken congisance of the unauthorised ‘bandh’ and incidents of violence during the state-wide ‘hartal’.