The government of India has now banned the Popular Front of India (PFI) on Wednesday, under Section three of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA), which now designates PFI as a “terrorist organization.”
Grounds on which the PFI has been banned
In its statement, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has stated several reasons for banning the PFI. Some of the stated reasons are:
- The organization has been covertly working to increase radicalization in a community by creating a false sense of insecurity.
- Some leaders of the Popular Front of India were also leaders of the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). PFI had links with Jamat-ul-Mujahedeen Bangladesh (JMB), both banned organizations in India. Links to ISIS also emerged as many members were engaged in terrorist activities in Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan.
- The PFI showed sheer disrespect towards the constitutional authority of India and has become a threat to the internal security of India through funds and ideological support from the outside.
- The Popular Front of India has also been a perpetrator of various acts of violence, like cold-blooded killings, chopping off body parts, and obtaining explosives to target prominent people.
- There were several murders in Kerala, Tamil Nadu Karnataka that the MHA has linked to the Popular Front of India.
- There was a red flag on PFI’s funding from within India and abroad through banking channels, hawala and donations, and they then transferred, layered, and integrated these funds through multiple accounts to prove them legitimate.
What does the ban mean?
The ban on PFI means that a lot of its activities will be halted, including funding, recruitment, or any of its activities. Anyone associated with the organization can be booked under the UAPA.
They will not be able to organize any events, including protests, seminars, conferences, donation drives, or publish anything. All of these activities can be declared illegal.
The bank accounts, properties, and offices of the Popular Front of India and associated organizations could be seized or attached, and there will be travel restrictions on its office-bearers.
The ban on PFI is a welcome move and it sends a clear message to all extremist organizations to not tamper with the fabric of India.