A file photo of the National Investigation Agency carrying out raids at Popular Front of India offices in New Delhi on September 22.
For the second time this month, raids were reportedly conducted at Popular Front of India (PFI) offices across India on Tuesday. Several arrests were made on Tuesday as well.
ANI reported that raids were conducted in Assam, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Telangana.
The raids are being conducted by the National Investigation Agency in collaboration with the police in each state. Arrests were also made in Kerala over PFI activists vandalising property.
Two people connected to the PFI were also arrested as they were accused of vandalising property in Kerala's Kottayam.
Here are the latest updates:
What happened on Tuesday?
25 arrests in Assam: The Assam police arrested at least 25 people connected to the PFI from the Nagarbera district. ANI reported Hiren Nath, ADGP (Special Branch) of Assam as saying, "Our operation against PFI is on in many parts of the district."
The Assam CPRO later told the news agency that five were arrested from Kamrup Rural, ten from Goalpara, one from Karimganj, one from Udalguri, one from Darrang, three from Dhubri, two from Barpeta, and two people from Baksa.
4 arrested from Thane: The Thane police have said that they have arrested four PFI activists. PTI quoted Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime) Laxmikant Patil as saying, "The arrests were made on Monday night in a joint operation carried out in the district by local police and crime branch officials."
The arrests were made from Mumbra, Kalyan and Bhiwandi.
30 arrested in Delhi: Raids were also carried out by the Delhi police in several areas like Shaheen Bagh and Nizamuddin where 30 people were arrested. Delhi Police spokesperson Suman Nalwa told The Indian Express, "It was a joint, coordinated action against PFI suspects. Thirty persons detained so far. We will provide further details."
The report said that the people arrested had been taken into preventive custody.
Why were arrests made in Kerala?
Two people were arrested for vandalising property in Kottamuri in Kottayam during a hartal (strike) called in the state by the PFI on Friday. A report in the Matrubhumi said that the accused — Nasarulla from Mattom and Shameer Salim from Noottonnu Kavala — were accused of throwing stones at a bakery while being on bikes.
This came after the NIA issued a lookout notice for two PFI activities in Kerala — Abdul Sathar, the PFI state general secretary and C Rouf the state secretary. The NIA said that they were the two who called for the hartal in Kerala.
Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan had earlier said that the PFI had planned a "guerialla strike" in Kerala on Friday.
The Times of India had reported that a special NIA court in Kochi sent 11 PFI activists to the custody of the investigative agency on Saturday.
The hartal was called after NIA raids across the country on September 22.
What were last week's raids about?
Last week the NIA had carried out searches in 93 locations in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Goa, West Bengal, Bihar and Manipur.
Several PFI offices were sealed and evidence was gathered by the investigative agency.
In a statement, the NIA had said, "These searches were conducted at the houses and offices of the top PFI leaders and members in connection with 5 cases registered by the NIA following continued inputs and evidence that the PFI leaders and cadres were involved in funding of terrorism and terrorist activities, organising training camps for providing armed training and radicalising people to join banned organisations. "
The NIA said that the PFI had several cases against them over the years and were carrying out violent acts. The statement said that they were connected to the Islamic State.
In last weeks raids, the NIA said they had recovered "incriminating documents, cash, sharp edged weapons and a large number of digital devices".
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