Law enforcement agencies conducted raids in various areas of Karnataka against members of the Popular Front of India (PFI), during which several of the group’s leaders were taken into custody.
Around 50 people are reportedly in jail as a result of raids that were conducted in Shivamogga, Chitradurga, Mangaluru, Hassan, Bidar, Chikkaballapura, Raichur, and other locations.
“The BJP government is doing this and creating an atmosphere of terror. The NIA has carried out so many raids but has not gotten any proof. We are not anti-nationals. We are protesting legally and won’t tolerate them taking away our leaders in the dead of the night. If they don’t release them, we will have to continue our protests. We are not going to get scared of the police and NIA and will legally continue our protests,” said one member of the PFI from Raichur.
Following days of coordinated arrests by the NIA across multiple states, which resulted in the imprisonment of almost 50 notable leaders, there has been a new round of raids.
Six persons were arrested in the Kolar district.
There are now two individuals in custody in Chamarajanagar.
District 11 PFI and SDPI members were arrested in Dakshina Kannada, while 20 PFI members were detained in Shivamogga.
In the Bagalkot district, seven PFI and SDPI members have been jailed and will remain there till October 3.
Two PFI leaders were arrested in Raichur, and one of them has been remanded in custody.
“The BJP has been a failure in India and Karnataka. Since they have nothing to do in front of the people, they are attempting these things,” PFI member added.
PFI members and supporter are protesting against the crackdown across the state.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) led multi-agency raids on the offices of the organisation and people connected to it on Thursday as part of a nationwide crackdown across 10 states for allegedly supporting terrorist activities, leading to the detention or arrest of numerous Popular Front of India (PFI) activists.
Raids were carried out simultaneously in Mysuru, Dakshina Kannada, Uttara Kannada, Shivamogga, Kalaburagi, Davanagere, Raichur, and Koppal during the crackdown in Karnataka.
Azeez Abdul Shukur Honnavar from Sirsi, Ejaj Ali, the district president of the PFI in Kalaburagi, Shahid Khan, the president of the SDPI in Shivamogga, Maulana Mohammad Kaleemulla, the former president of Mysuru, Imamuddin from Davanagere, and Abu Tahir from Harihara town have all been arrested by police, according to officials.
The following day, Bengaluru cops arrested 14 persons. The majority of those arrested were PFI members.
Police commissioner CH Pratap Reddy, said the suspects were picked up for questioning in connection with a suo motu case registered at the city’s KG Halli police station.
These 14 individuals had remanded in police custody by a Bengaluru court until October 3.
Prominent religious figures and human rights activists in the nation asked that all of the leaders of the Popular Front of India and the Social Democratic Party of India who have been illegally arrested by the NIA be unconditionally and promptly released.
“The raids and arrests are ill motivated and an attempt to silence the dissenting voices against fascism,” read a joint statement by people include Dr. Suresh Khairnar, convenor of All India Secular Forum, Syed Sarwar Chisthy, Gaddi Nashin Khadim of Dargah Ajmer Sharrif , and Rajratna Ambedkar, president of the Buddhist Society of India.