Maharashtra: 40 PFI activists arrested across state over anti-national activities

According to police, 14 people were arrested from Aurangabad, four from Thane, two each from Nanded, Parbhani and Malegaon (in Nashik district) and one from Amravati.

Somendra SharmaUpdated: Tuesday, September 27, 2022, 11:25 PM IST
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NIA raids underway at PFI's Navi Mumbai office, on Tuesday | ANI

In the ongoing crackdown against the anti-India activities, the Maharashtra Police arrested 40 activists of the Popular Front of India (PFI) after raids in various districts of the state, officials said.

Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had told the media that the crackdown on PFI was as per law based on the investigation into their activities and evidence.

"Attempts were being made to create a division in society and weaken the country. This was being done systematically," said Fadnavis, who is also the state home minister.

According to police, 14 people were arrested from Aurangabad, four from Thane, two each from Nanded, Parbhani and Malegaon (in Nashik district) and one from Amravati.

"Two persons, Rashadun Saden Shahid Iqbal and Mohammad Irfan Daulat Khan Nadvi from Malegaon were arrested. They were produced before a local court which externed term for two days," said an officer from Nashik Rural police.

Laxmikant Patil, deputy commissioner of police (crime) Thane said, "Action was initiated on Monday night and four PFI activists were arrested. Two from Mumbra and one each from Kalyan and Bhiwandi. The arrested were identified as Abdul Matin Shekhani and Dawood Siraj Ahmed Shaikh both from Mumbra and Fadin Paikar from Kalyan and Ashiq Ansari from Bhiwandi. All four were presented in the court on Tuesday, September 27 and after hearing all the facts mentioned by both sides, the court released the four PFI activists by taking undertakings from them. However, we can very much arrest them in future if they will be involved in any protest or activities supporting PFI."

Besides, the Pune police detained six persons linked to the PFI from the Kondhwa area of the city.

The prevention action under Criminal Procedure Code Section 151(3) has been taken in the backdrop of the recent crackdown on the PFI by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS), a senior police officer said.

Earlier the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) officials had arrested 21 persons in connection with one of the ongoing cases related to the Popular Front of India (PFI) for allegedly carrying out unlawful activities.

According to the police, on September 22, ATS had registered four FIRs against members of PFI for allegedly carrying out unlawful activities.

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