The National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED), the two servile tools in the hands of the Hindutva regime at the centre arrested more than 100 top leaders of the Popular Front of India and the Social Democratic Party on the wee hours of last Thursday, the 22nd September 2022. The arrested include Chairman O M A Salam, General Secretary Anis Ahmed, Vice Chairman EM Abdurahman, etc. UAPA has been imposed on them. In the statements issued thereafter, the agencies have made a number of allegations against the leaders and the organisation.
When they conducted ‘raids’ at the offices of the Popular Front of India, and the residences of the leaders, they couldn’t find any incriminating documents or evidence from the raids that were conducted after arresting the leaders. What they are reported is certain gadgets and pen drives of the school-going children of the leaders were said to have found , and publicly circulated brochures and booklets.
This was a deliberate attempt to generate a feeling of terror among people about Popular Front of India, a legally and transparently functioning organisation. The term “crackdown” that is being used by the agencies and the media to describe the arrests and raids itself conveys the intention of the regime to assign a stigma to the organisation and consequently terrorise the general public. arrested leaders are always visibly present either at their residences or at the offices of the organisation or at public programmes, and it was the same scenario at the time of the arrest as well. They were neither fugitives nor were in the hideouts. Many of the leaders were either on the stage or on the audience of the ’Save the Republic Grand People’s Conference’ at Kozhikode in Kerala on the 17th September. So, there was no need of any ‘crackdown’ as being propagated by the agencies and the media to arrest these leaders. They have always responded positively to the summons of the agencies so far.
The arrests were not made after the raids and finding out any incriminating evidences. Nor it was based on any offences committed by the arrested leaders. They were arrested and shifted from the sites, and raids were conducted afterwards in their absence. Even then the agencies were not able to find out any evidence against the leaders.
This is just a witch hunt to dissenting voices.
The allegations by the agencies and its real facts:
1. PFI spreads disaffection against India
• The fact is otherwise. The organisation in its history of three decades has been endeavouring to prevent the youths from getting radicalised due to the discrimination and denial of right and justice they underwent, and to bring them to the mainstream by instilling patriotism, strong allegiance to the Constitution of the country and respect the democratic values. It has been the Popular Front of India that made the otherwise gloomy and confined-to-the-government-ritual-celebration of the Independence Day a popular event by conducting volunteer march holding the national flag.
2. Create hatred against the state and its machineries
• Popular Front is a law-abiding organisation. It imparts a culture of respect for rule of law in the country. It has been cooperating with all the investigating agecies as and when fictitious allegation emerged. . Popular Front is also a strong proponent of equality before law and transparency of democratic institutions of the country. Criticising the wrong policies of the government cannot be interpreted as creating hatred against state and its machineries, it’s the democratic duty and a civil right.
3. Conspired to establish Islamic rule in India by committing terrorist act as a part of violent jihad
• Popular Front has never thought of or endeavoured to establish Islamic rule in the country. It always strongly raises its voice to maintain the democracy in the country and to save and protect the Constitution. This allegation of terrorism and violence against the organisation is baseless and intended to defame the organisation. Most of the Popular Front programmes revolve around the theme of democracy, justice and equality.
4. Funding of terrorism and terrorist activities
• This has been a routine allegation which the Hindutva fascists have been raising since years which they have not succeeded to prove till date.
5. Encouraged youths to join terrorist organisations including Lashkar-e-Taiba, Indian Mujahideen Islamic State, etc.
• There is no proof or whatsoever that backs this allegation. In fact, Popular Front had educated its members and warned youths of the country against such dubious organisations. Popular Front was the first organisation in the country to warn and educate youth against ISIS.
6. Organising training camps for providing armed training
• The organisation annually conducts a health awareness campaign ‘Healthy People Healthy Nation’ with an aim to create awareness of the significance of healthy lifestyle among the masses. As part of this Yoga demonstrations, blood donation camps and marathon races are held. This is wrongly being portrayed as organising training camps.
7. Targeting prominent leaders of a particular community
• BJP had raised the same allegation back in 2018 against the Popular Front. They alleged that several prominent leaders of a ‘particular’ community were targeted by the Popular Front and some were killed. But there is no iota of evidence .
8. Promoting enmity between different groups on the basis of religion
• Popular Front always stands for communal harmony. It believes in and cherishes the diversity of this country. In the past two decades of its history, a single instance of a leader or member of the organisation disrespecting or speaking ill of other faiths cannot be found. The oxymoron is that, one charge made by police is that Popular Front is working with Dalit and other marginalised Hindu groups.
9. Attack plan on Modi
• This allegation exposes the incompetence of our intelligence agencies. May be the Sangh Parivar has a plot, and this seems to be a pre-emptive strike to attack its leader and put the blame on Popular Front to win the 2024 election.
In fact, the Sangh Parivar is terrorising the Muslims by denying them basic rights, spreading extreme hatred, openly giving discriminating calls, lynching and abusing Muslims in the streets, bulldozing their homes with wild justifications and by keeping the country’s judicial system as their puppet. Their terrorising of Muslims includes portraying the performance of Namaz at Muslims’ own homes as a criminal activity, and even by keeping mum on (or suspiciously participating in) the genocide calls against Muslims in public solely on the grounds of religion.
In fact, the allegation by the Sangh Parivar that the Popular Front is radicalising the Muslims fits well to RSS. The RSS, by the aforesaid acts, is trying to engender unrest and thought of revenge amongst the Muslim youths, and to instigate them to hold weapons and retaliate violently, so that eliminating them for these crimes would be easy for the Sangh Parivar.
On the other hand, Popular Front is doing exactly the opposite. They are preventing the people from getting radicalised by teaching and making them aware of their constitutional rights, encouraging them to participate in the political process of the country, respecting democracy and the Constitution, and the need to live in harmony.
If such an effort of countering the hate propaganda and politics of hatred of the Sangh Parivar, by making the community aware of the law of the land and spirit of the Constitution, is suppressed, demonised or banned, the result will be counter-productive that would spread anarchy and chaos.
Therefore, we urge the secular, democratic political parties, organisations and the citizens to come forward, raise their voice against the undemocratic and unjust witch hunt against the Popular Front of India and defeat the tyrannical fascist efforts that lead the country into peril.
Popular Front of India