What is Popular Front of India (PFI) & Why Indian Government Banned PFI ?

In accordance with Section 3 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, the Indian government on Tuesday, September 27, 2022, banned the Popular Front of India (PFI) and any of its allies, affiliates, or fronts for a period of five years.

Days after the National Investigation Agency (NIA), Enforcement Directorate (ED), and other state/UT police conducted a statewide search operation against, the organisation and its associates were banned.

This came after it was accused of engaging in terrorist actions, sponsoring terrorist organisations, training terrorists, and radicalising weaker members of society. In the last few days, hundreds of its leaders and members of this group have been detained.

What is the Popular Front of India (PFI)?

In 2006, the National Development Front and the Karnataka Forum for Dignity (KFD), two additional Islamic organisations, merged to form the Popular Front of India, an Indian Muslim political organisation (NDF).

In order to empower individuals to secure justice, freedom, and security, the organisation describes itself as a non-governmental social organisation. Additionally, it supports Muslim reservations. The Indian government, however, has charged it of engaging in anti-social and anti-national actions.

The Popular Front of India is currently well-represented in the Indian States of Kerala and Karnataka. Additionally, it operates in over 20 Indian States. According to the organisation, it has hundreds of thousands of cadre members.

Why Indian Government Banned PFI?

In an official statement, the Ministry of Home Affairs said that PFI and its affiliates were political, socioeconomic, and educational organisations, but that they were also working behind the scenes to radicalise a specific segment of society.

A major threat to the nation’s internal security, according to the report, is posed by the PFI, which has been linked to several criminal and terrorist cases, exhibits blatant disregard for the country’s constitutional authorities, and has received financial and ideological support from abroad.

Along with the Popular Front of India, eight of its allies, fronts, and affiliates were also outlawed for being “illegal groups.” According to a statement from the Central Government, the state governments of Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, and Karnataka recommended the prohibition. These groups are:

:- 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

:- Rehab Foundation, Kerala

Politics Leader’s Reactions To PFI Ban

The PFI and its allies were outlawed by the Center, which was applauded by the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP). The Modi Government made a bold and definite choice, according to the party.

All chief ministers, including Hemanta Biswa Sarma of Assam and Yogi of Uttar Pradesh, applaud this decision.

Lalu Prasad Yadav, a former chief minister of Bihar, opined that PFI should not be the only organisation of its kind to be outlawed. He said in a tweet that one of them is RSS.

Asaduddin Owaisi, the leader of AIMIM, stated that while he has consistently disagreed with PFI’s strategy, he cannot support the ban.