The Karnataka police on Tuesday swung into action and conducted searches at several houses of activists belonging to the Popular Front of India (PFI) in the state, besides making some arrests.
While Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai termed the police action as a precautionary measure, former Chief Minister and Janata Dal Secular leader H.D. Kumaraswamy wanted more details of the police action.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) had conducted searches in various parts of the country and arrested several PFI leaders in various states on September 22. Many PFI leaders were taken into preventive custody by the police on Tuesday.
At a press conference here on Tuesday, Kumaraswamy said if the state government does not furnish details on the raids, then it would be considered as a diversion tactic of the government over the alleged BMS scam that he made on the floor of the Assembly with documents.
Kumaraswamy pointed out that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) had conducted raids on PFI members across the nation a couple of days, and the state police raided PFI members again on Monday night.
“I do not know whether the raids were conducted on the directions of the state government or based on inputs to the police department,” he said.
If more details about the raids are not made public, Kumaraswamy said it would send a wrong message to the society and the raids on PFI would be looked upon with suspicion.
On the raids on PFI, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai made it clear that it was not raids conducted on PFI members but certain precautionary measures taken by the police.
He, however, said the raids were conducted based on certain inputs to seek details and arrests made by the police.
Condemning the preventive arrests of PFI leaders, Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) has blamed the BJP government for trying to appease the Sangh Parivar through such actions.
“We strongly condemn this arrest by the fascist BJP government. They are involved in such action just to appease the Sangh Parivar and BJP workers and to hide their failure in both state and center,” SDPI state committee member Athavulla Jokatte told Deccan Chronicle.
“While national and state level leaders were arrested on September 22, today the police have arrested the prominent leaders of various districts where PFI is strong. Those leaders who had led the protest against the NIA action have been arrested today,” he alleged.
“Ours is a democratic country and PFI was formed as per the constitutional provision. We condemn the government targeting PFI,” he added.
Karnataka state BJP chief Nalin Kumar Kateel blamed the inaction of Siddaramaiah-led Congress government which resulted in strengthening of the PFI. “We are taking strict action against such organizations,” he said.
Sri Rama Sene founder Pramod Muthalik appreciated the central government for taking strict action against the PFI leaders. “They are threatening Sangh Parivar activists and also Hindu leaders. Such strict action against PFI by the central government is commendable,” he added.