The Union Home Affairs Ministry on Wednesday declared the Popular Front of India (PFI) and its associates or affiliates or fronts as ‘Unlawful’ for five years under the provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.
"The Popular Front of India (PFI) and its associates or affiliates or fronts have been found to be involved in serious offences, including terrorism and its financing, targeted gruesome killings, disregarding the constitutional set up of the country, disturbing public order etc. which are prejudicial to the integrity, security and sovereignty of the country," the Union Home Affairs Ministry said in a statement.
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) stated that it has found it necessary to curb the nefarious activities of the organisation and has hence declared the PFI along with its associates or affiliates or fronts, including Rehab India Foundation (RIF), Campus Front of India (CFI), All India Imams Council (AIIC), National Confederation of Human Rights Organization (NCHRO), National Women’s Front, Junior Front, Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala as an “unlawful association”.
A notification by the MHA read," Whereas, the investigations have established clear linkages between PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts. The Rehab India Foundation collects funds through PFI members and some of the members of the PFI are also members of Campus Front of India, Empower India Foundation, Rehab Foundation, Kerala, and the activities of Junior Front, All India Imams Council, National Confederation of Human Rights Organisation (NCHRO) and National Women’s Front are monitored/coordinated by the PFI leaders".
The PFI has created the above mentioned associates or affiliates or fronts with the objective of enhancing its reach among different sections of the society such as youth, students, women, Imams, lawyers or weaker sections of the society with the sole objective of expanding its membership, influence and fund raising capacity, the MHA stated.
These associates or affiliates or fronts have a ‘Hub and Spoke’ relationship with the PFI acting as the hub and utilising the mass outreach and fund raising capacity of its associates or affiliates or fronts for strengthening its capability for unlawful activities and these associates or affiliates or fronts function as ‘roots and capillaries’ through which the PFI is fed and strengthened, it stated.
The PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts operate openly as socio-economic, educational and political organisation but, they have been pursuing a secret agenda to radicalize a particular section of the society working towards undermining the concept of democracy and show sheer disrespect towards the constitutional authority and constitutional set up of the country, the MHA stated in its notification.
The MHA maintained that PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts have been indulging in unlawful activities, which are prejudicial to the integrity, sovereignty and security of the country and have the potential of disturbing public peace and communal harmony of the country and supporting militancy in the country.
The Central government is of the opinion that if there is no immediate curb or control of unlawful activities of the PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts, the PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts, will use this opportunity to:
i) continue its subversive activities, thereby disturbing public order and undermining the constitutional set up of the country;
(ii) encourage and enforce terror based regressive regime;
(iii) continue propagating anti-national sentiments and radicalise a particular section of society with the intention to create disaffection against the country;
(iv) aggravate activities which are detrimental to the integrity, security and sovereignty of the country.
Therefore, it is necessary to declare the PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts to be unlawful association with immediate effect for a period of five years, the MHA added.