The Centre had declared the the Popular Front of India's (PFI) and its associates or affiliates or fronts as an "unlawful association" for five years.
The official Twitter account of the Popular Front of India's (PFI) was taken down after the Centre imposed a ban on the organisation for five years. The account has been withheld in India "in response to a legal demand", read the message on the social media account run under the name '@PFIOfficial'.
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Following a major crackdown on the PFI, the Centre had banned the outfit and its eight affiliates early Wednesday, declaring them as "unlawful association" for the next five years. The action was taken under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
The PFI associates which are now banned are: Rehab India Foundation (RIF), Campus Front of India (CFI), All India Imams Council (AIIC), National Confederation of Human Rights Organization (NCHRO), National Women’s Front, Junior Front, Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala.
The ban on the PFI came after two mega rounds of raids against the outfit for allegedly supporting terror activities in the country. The raids were conducted by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), Enforcement Directorate (ED) and state police across several states.
Why was PFI banned?
In its order, the Ministry of Home Affairs said the PFI and its associates were "found to be involved in serious offences, including terrorism and its financing".
The ministry cited the "chopping off limb of a college professor, cold blooded killings of persons associated with organisations espousing other faiths, obtaining explosives to target prominent people and places and destruction of public property" among other reasons for banning the outfit.
The official release said that the organisation "targeted gruesome killings, disregarding the constitutional set up of the country, disturbing public order etc. which are prejudicial to the integrity, security and sovereignty of the country".
Hours after announcing the ban, the central government ordered blocking websites and social media accounts of the PFI - pertaining to which the action was taken early Thursday.
PFI banned, what happens next?
After imposing a five-year ban on the PFI and its affiliates, the home ministry asked the police in states and Union Territories to take action against its other offices and seize funds.
PFI members will now have to declare their dissociation from the organisation, News 18 reported. If they continue, they will face a two-year jail term and fine, senior government officials were quoted by News 18 as saying.
(Inputs from News 18 and agencies)
First Published: IST