500 arrested, 400 detained after violent PFI protests in Kerala


As many as 500 people were arrested and 400 others put under preventive detention on Friday in connection with violent protests during the twelve-hour strike in Kerala called by PFI to protest the arrest of the organisation’s leaders.
Petrol bomb was also hurled at the RSS office in Mattannur. According to reports, two persons on a scooter hurled a petrol bomb at the Sangh office which resulted in the shattering of window panes.
“500 people have been arrested in connection with that and 400 more have been put under preventive detention in connection with a hartal called by the Popular front of India (PFI). An incident of stone pelting was also reported at the RSS office at Mattanur,” the ADGP, Law and Order, Vijay Sakhare said.
The ADGP also gave details of another incident where arrests were made for carrying an explosive device. “In another case, two persons on motorcycle with a bomb were arrested. Three more people were arrested later. All the five have been arrested. Currently, the situation is normal and under control,” Sakhare said.
A day after PFI leaders were arrested in massive nationwide raids by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and other agencies, the controversial organisation had called for a dawn-to dusk shutdown on Friday.
The hartal (strike) started at 6 am and will continue for 12 hours till 6 pm, informed a protester.
According to the police, stone-pelting incidents were reported at various places in the state during the protest. Visuals showed the protestors pelting stones at the Kerala State Transport Corporation (KSRTC) bus at Panamaram village in Wayanad district.
The bus was going to Kozhikode. KSRTC buses were also attacked in Kozhikode, Kochi, Alappuzha and Kollam.
“Two miscreants on a bike at Pallimukku in the Kollam district abused police officials and hit them after they attempted to stop them,” police said.
The injured police officials identified as Antony and Nikhil have been admitted to the hospital. The police said the accused will soon be taken into custody.
In the state capital of Thiruvananthapuram, an auto rickshaw and a car were seen in a damaged state after being attacked in Poonthura. In Kottayam, roads were seen deserted.
A total of 106 Popular Front of India (PFI) cadres were arrested yesterday in a joint operation conducted by the National Investigation Agency, Enforcement Directorate and state police forces across 15 states in the country’s multiple locations, according to the sources.