NIA searches and arrests across India, in five cases. pic.twitter.com/IhDGYlZISE
— NIA India (@NIA_India) September 22, 2022
New Delhi. NIA on Thursday (September 22, 2022) spearheaded a multi-agency operation in 15 states and arrested as many as 45 leaders and members of the PFI for allegedly supporting terror activities in the country. The coordinated searches were jointly conducted by NIA, Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the State Police forces at 93 locations in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi, Assam, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Goa, West Bengal, Bihar and Manipur.
“These searches were conducted at the houses and offices of the top PFI leaders and members in connection with five cases registered by the NIA following continued inputs and evidence that the PFI leaders and cadres were involved in the funding of terrorism and terrorist activities, organising training camps for providing armed training and radicalising people to join banned organisations,” an official statement said.
During the searches, which have been termed as the “largest-ever investigation process till date”, incriminating documents, cash, sharp-edged weapons, and a large number of digital devices have been seized.
According to the reports, maximum number of arrests were made in Kerala (19) followed by Tamil Nadu (11), Karnataka (7), Andhra Pradesh (4), Rajasthan (2), and one each from Uttar Pradesh and Telangana.
“A large number of criminal cases have been registered by different states over the last few years against the PFI and its leaders and members for their involvement in many violent acts. Criminal violent acts carried out by PFI such as chopping off the hand of a college professor, cold-blooded killings of persons associated with organisations espousing other faiths, collection of explosives to target prominent people and places, support to Islamic State and destruction of public property have had a demonstrative effect of striking terror in the minds of the citizens”.