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Probe agency NIA conducts raids in 5 states, Delhi in cases linked to banned PFI

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) said on Wednesday that it carried out extensive search operations at twenty locations across the country as part of ongoing investigations in cases linked with the banned Popular Front of India (PFI), and their involvement in anti-national activities.

These searches were carried out at the premises in various places, including Fazalpur, Shaheen Bagh, Okhla and Chandni Chowk in Delhi; Bhopal district in Madhya Pradesh; Thane and Mumbai in Maharashtra; Tonk and Gangapur City districts in Rajasthan; in Lucknow, Siddharth Nagar, Sant Ravidas Nagar, Kanpur and Gorakhpur in Uttar Pradesh; and in Madurai, Tamil Nadu.

During the searches, a substantial cache of crucial evidence in the ongoing probe against PFI was found. This includes various digital devices such as laptops, mobile phones, SIM cards, memory cards, pen drives and hard disks. Furthermore, incriminating documents were recovered during the operations.

Additionally, a significant amount of Indian currency, with a face value of Rs. 8.5 lakh, was seized during the raids.

The case was initially registered on July 12, 2022, at Phulwarisharif Police Station in Bihar’s Patna district. Following its investigation, the NIA re-registered this case on July 22, 2022. The core allegation of this case centred around the gathering of individuals with suspicious intent in the Phulwarisharif area of Patna.

On July 11 last year, a raid was conducted by the officers of Phulwarisharif Police Station, based on confidential information. The operation targeted the rented residence of Athar Parvez, culminating in the discovery of incriminating materials closely associated with the PFI. Notably, a document titled “India 2047 Towards Rule of Islam in India, Internal Document: Not for circulation” was among the findings.

The investigation led to the apprehension of several suspects at the initial stages. The accused in the case — Athar Parvej, Md Jalaluddin Khan, Nooruddin Zangi alias Advocate Nooruddin, and Arman Malick alias Imteyaz Anwer — were taken into custody for their alleged involvement in the matter.

To date, the NIA has submitted three chargesheets against a total of 13 suspects in the case. During the course of investigations, a total of 17 accused persons have been taken into custody.

They are alleged to have been actively involved in furthering the unlawful activities of PFI, including the illicit funnelling of funds from overseas to PFI members and suspects in this case, the NIA said.

Previously, the anti-terror probe agency conducted multiple searches in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Kerala in order to collect evidence against the accused in the present case.

During the investigations, the NIA caught Anwar Rashid, a former member of the banned organisation Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). Anwar Rashid’s arrest was linked to his involvement in a criminal conspiracy, alongside FIR-named suspects Athar Parvej, Manjar Parvej, and others, all working towards advancing the agenda of the PFI.

Following the ban on SIMI, its members, including Anwar Rashid, were associated with Wahadat-e-Islami, an organisation formed by former SIMI members, and continued to promote the ideology of Islamic rule in India.

Investigations revealed that Anwar Rashid, in his association with a publication house, was involved in the supply of material for promoting the ideology of the PFI, the NIA stated.

Edited By:

Prateek Chakraborty

Published On:

Oct 12, 2023

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Image Credit / Source: News Wire