Jamaat-e-Islami Hind expresses concern over NIA, ED raids on Popular Front of India

Syed Sadatullah Husaini

Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH), chief and prominent Muslim scholar Syed Sadatullah Husaini, has deplored the raids and crackdown on Popular Front of India leadership and offices by the National Investigation Agency and Enforcement Directorate.

In a statement to the media, the JIH president said: “Jamaat-e-Islami Hind is highly concerned over the raids conducted by the NIA and ED on the Popular Front of India (PFI) offices and their leaders. Agencies like NIA can investigate people against whom they have clear evidence, but such actions should appear unbiased and free from political motivation.”

“Are the NIA and ED following the standard operating procedure in the raids? The way NIA and ED have made simultaneous raids across the country, targeting PFI, raises many questions for our society to answer. The operation becomes suspicious, particularly in the backdrop of several actions by central government agencies against opposition groups and leaders in the last few years through various state agencies like NIA, ED, CBI, and the Police,” said Husaini.

According to Husaini, “this hurts our democratic ethos and endangers the rights of citizens to criticize and appraise those in power.”

The action becomes questionable also because the action is not being taken against several groups openly indulging in hate-mongering and violence, he said.

“Hence, these raids raise uncomfortable questions for society. Are the raids meant to appease a particular constituency? If that is the case, then is it not a kind of appeasement and vote-bank politics?”

Jamaat-e-Islami Hind has said it deplores all such raids and actions in which people are subject to harassment in an unjust manner, irrespective of whether they belong to the opposition, the minorities, or any social class of society.

“If the state agencies are taking coercive action against them in a biased manner without proof and justification, then it is not healthy for a vibrant and just society. Jamaat-e-Islami Hind never endorses hate and violence and condemns it unequivocally,” read the statement.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) Thursday arrested at least 100 leaders of Popular Front of India and eminent Muslim figures as part of the searches conducted at the PFI’s offices and houses of state and district level leaders across 11 states.

According to news agency PTI, the NIA officials termed the searches “largest-ever investigation process till date”.

Arrests were made from Andhra Pradesh (5), Assam (9), Delhi (3), Karnataka (20), Kerala (25), Madhya Pradesh (4), Maharashtra (20), Puducherry (3), Rajasthan (2), Tamil Nadu (10) and Uttar Pradesh (8).