Police have arrested four activists of the Popular Front of India (PFI) from different locations in Maharashtra’s Thane district for alleged anti-national activities, an official said on Tuesday.
The arrests were made on Monday night in a joint operation carried out in the district by local police and crime branch officials, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime) Laxmikant Patil said. Two of the activists were nabbed from Mumbra and one each from Kalyan and Bhiwandi towns, he said without elaborating.
The PFI, formed in 2006, claims to strive for a neo-social movement ostensibly for the empowerment of marginalised sections of India, and is often accused by law enforcement agencies of promoting radical Islam In near-simultaneous raids across the length and breadth of the country on September 22, a multi-agency operation spearheaded by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) led to the arrest of 106 PFI activists in 15 states for allegedly supporting terror activities in the country.
The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) had arrested 20 PFI members from different parts of the state in the multi-agency raids. On Monday, the ATS arrested one more PFI activist from Nanded in Marathwada region.
The ATS on Monday told a court in Mumbai that it wanted to probe the links of five of the 20 people arrested last week with organisations including Al Qaeda and the Islamic State and also investigate the electronic evidence.
The ATS said it has recovered some literature and a book titled ‘Who Killed Karkare’ from one of the accused and seized his laptop and phone