Bengaluru/UNI: In the largest investigation conducted by NIA to date, searches are being carried out against PFI and persons allegedly supporting terrorists, in Karnataka's Bengaluru, Kalaburagi, Mangaluru, Koppala, Davanagere, Mysuru and Shivamogga as part of its nationwide operation.
Several PFI activists and leaders have been detained in several parts of the state for alleged terror funding, organising training camps, and radicalising people to join proscribed organisations.
In Bengaluru, NIA searched PFI National Secretary Mohammad Sakib's house at Richmond Town. Houses of PFI secretary Afsar Pasha and Karnataka State President Nasir Pasha at Padarayanapura and Tannery Road, also were searched.
The PFI in a statement said the "raids are taking place at the homes of its national, state and local leaders. The state committee office is also being raided. We strongly protest the fascist regime's moves to use agencies to silence dissenting voices".
Rubbishing the allegations, Karnataka Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said the police does not take action based on which religion the anti-national criminals belong to.
"If the people who work against the nation belong to the minorities, what the police can do. The police do not act looking at which religion the criminals belong to," Jnanendra said.
The NIA conducts raids based on the tacit documentary evidence, therefore there is no question of police targeting minorities, he added.
The minister showered praise on Shivamogga police for getting deep into the anti-India activities of SDPI and PFI.
"A couple of days back, two persons, having links with IS, have been arrested who were planning to create panic in the society by exploding bombs in public places. This was unearthed by Shivamogga police. I salute their efforts," Jnanendra said.
In Mangaluru, search operations were conducted in SDPI and PFI district offices on Nellikai road. Raids also were held at the house of Abdul Khader Kulai near Kulai in Dakshina Kannada. Abdul is brother of SDPI district president Abubakar Kulai.
Search operations were also being conducted on several houses of SDPI and PFI leaders in Bajpe, Jokatte, Kavoor and Kulai, NIA sources said.
In response to the raids, protests were held by PFI and SDPI workers.