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PFI might be proscribed

Staff Reporter

Police acting with prejudice, says organisation

KOCHI: The State government may consider steps to proscribe the Popular Front of India (PFI), allegedly involved in the assault on T.J. Joseph, professor at Newman College, Thodupuzha.

Senior police officials indicated that the registering of case under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act against Kunjumon, from whose vehicle CDs containing gruesome punishment techniques employed by the Al-Qaeda and Taliban were recovered, could lead to that soon.

The CDs could have been used to condition and train PFI activists to commit the crime. It also showed that the organisation had contact with international bodies, police sources said.

Lookout notices

The police issued lookout notices against Ali K.K. of Kuzhithottil Veedu, Cheruvattoor, Kothamangalam; Younus, 30, of Vellilavunkal Veedu, Nellimattom, Kothamangalam; and Nassar, 40, of Marangattu Veedu, Kunjunnikkara, Aluva.

Ali was involved in the purchase of the Omni van used by the assailants on Sunday. Younus, Muvattupuzha commander of the PFI, had a major role in planning the operation. The police also registered a case under the Arms Act against Ayub, another office-bearer of the PFI from Aluva, from whose residence a couple of guns were recovered.

The police searches at residences of PFI office-bearers and offices continued on Friday.

The police are checking the list of more than 20,000 passengers who have gone abroad through the Cochin international airport since the attack. Senior police officials said that the chances of the activists leaving the country were slim.

As the activists have absconded en masse and staying away from regular hideouts, the police are extending their search to the entire State. Messages have been sent to put areas with sympathisers on the lookout, said a police official.

Response

Staff Reporter writes from Kozhikode: Accusing the police of acting with “evident prejudice” against it in the assault case on T.J. Joseph, professor at Newman College, Thodupuzha, the State committee of PFI said it would organise a State-wide protest on Saturday.

Addressing a press meet here on Friday, PFI State general secretary P. Abdul Hameed said the party was not against any investigation into the incident if it was held in a free and fair manner.

The PFI leader alleged that certain vested interests were trying to make a divide between different religions in the State.

Terming the assault on the college lecturer “unfortunate” and “unacceptable”, Mr. Hameed accused that in the name of searching for the suspects, the police were committing excesses.

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