PFI disbands organisation hours after Centre’s ban, asks all members to cease activities

PFI said in a statement that as law-abiding citizens, they accept the MHA decision to impose a five-year ban on the organisation.

PFI disbands organisation hours after Centre’s ban, asks all members to cease activities
A view of Popular Front of India party office at Hatigaon in Guwahati. (Express photo by Dasarath Deka)

The Popular Front of India (PFI) has announced that it is dissolving the organisation with immediate effect, a move that followed the Centre’s decision to impose a five-year ban on the organisation and its affiliates and fronts.

In a statement issued Wednesday evening, PFI state general secretary A Abdul Sattar announced that the organisation was being disbanded following the notification by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) imposing a ban on it.

Also Read: Centre bans PFI, eight other associated organisations for five years

Sattar stated that PFI accepts the decision of the Home Ministry and that the organisation has been working with a clear vision for the socio-economic and cultural empowerment of the underprivileged, downtrodden and marginalised sections of the society for the past 30 years.

“But as law-abiding citizens of our great country, the organisation accepts the decision of the Ministry of Home Affairs. It also informs all its former members and the general public that the Popular Front of India has been disbanded. All members of the Popular Front of India are requested to cease their activities since the publication of the notification,’’ he said.

Also Read | PFI ban: Political leaders welcome move, some ask for ‘RSS ban’ too – Here’s who said what

On Wednesday morning, the MHA banned the PFI and outfits associated with it, including the Rehab India Foundation (RIF) and the Campus Front of India, among others, for five years under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

The ban came after a week of a nationwide crackdown against the outfit and its offshoot the SDPI by the National Investigation AGency and state police units in seven states, leading to the arrest of over 350 people across India. 

In the second nationwide crackdown on the radical outfit in five days, police teams across seven states conducted raids on Tuesday and detained or arrested more than 270 people with alleged links to the radical outfit.

Other organisations banned by the MHA on Wednesday morning include the All India Imams Council (AIIC), Rehab India Foundation (RIF), Campus Front of India (CFI), National Confederation of Human Rights Organization (NCHRO), Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala, National Women’s Front, Junior Front.

In its notification announcing the ban, the MHA said that the Centre believes that the PFI and its affiliates have been involved in subversive activities, which are disturbing the public order and enforcing a terror-based regressive regime.

It also stated that PFI is instigating anti-national sentiments and radicalising a particular section of society with the intent to create disaffection against the country.

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