After Centre's ban, Nagaland govt declares PFI and its affiliates as 'unlawful association'
Kohima, Sep 30: After Centre's notification, the Nagaland government on Friday have issued an order declaring PFI and its affiliates or fronts as an 'unlawful association'. Earlier, the Centre had directed the States and Union Territories to exercise powers of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 against them.
In a notification issued yesterday, the government declared PFI and its associates and affiliates as an unlawful association with immediate effect, for a period of five years after it was found that it was indulging in alleged terror funding.
PFI's associate organisations Rehab India Foundation (RIF), Campus Front of India (CFI), All India Imams Council (AIIC), National Confederation of Human Rights Organisation (NCHRO), National Women's Front, Junior Front, Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala have also been banned.
"In exercise of powers conferred by sub-section (1) of section 3 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 (37 of 1967), the Central Government hereby declared the Popular Front of India (PFI) and its associated or affiliates or fronts including Rehab India Foundation, Campus Front of India, All India Imams Council, National Confederation of Human Rights Organization, National Women's Front, Junior Front, Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala, as an 'unlawful association'," the notification read.
"And Whereas, the Central Government, having regard to the above circumstances, is of the firm opinion that it is necessary to declare the PFI and its associated or affiliates or fronts as an unlawful association with immediate effect, and accordingly, in exercise of the powers conferred by the proviso to sub-section (3) of section 2 of the said Act, the Central Government hereby directs that this notification shall, subject to any order that may be made under section 4 of the said Act, have effect for a period of five years from the date of its publication in the Official Gazette," the government notification also said.
"There had been a number of instances of international linkages of PFI with Global Terrorist Groups and some activists of the PFI have joined Islamic State of Iraq and Syria and participated in terror activities in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan," it also read.
PFI as an organisation came into existence in 2006. However, it dates back to 1993 when an organisation called the National Development Front was formed to protect the interests of Muslims in Kerala following the demolition of the Babri Masjid.
The activities of the NDF were restricted to Kerala alone. There was a decision that was later on taken to unify like-minded outfits from Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. The PFI then was born in 2006 with the merger of NDF, Karnataka Forum for Dignity and the Manitha Neethi Pasarai in Tamil Nadu.
By 2009 more organisations merged with the PFI. They were Goa Citizen's Forum, Rajasthan's Community Social and Educational Society, West Bengal's Nagarik Adhikar Suraksha Samithi, Manipur's Lilong Social Forum and Association of Social Justice, Andhra Pradesh.
The PFI has often been accused of associating with the banned Students Islamic Movement of India. Most of the office bearers of the PFI have been associated with the SIMI in the past. They have held positions in the SIMI before it had been banned.