The story so far: On Friday, September 23, the dawn-to-dusk hartal organised by the Popular Front of India (PFI) in Kerala in response to large-scale arrests of its leaders by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) was marked by sporadic incidents of violence, with some police officials being attacked in Kollam and interstate-buses being targeted in Kannur. In a sweeping crackdown on Thursday, the NIA, in joint operations with the Enforcement Directorate and State police departments, arrested more than 100 top leaders and functionaries of the PFI across 11 states including Kerala, Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Assam, based on allegations that the accused were funding terror acts, organising weapon training camps and radicalising people to join banned outfits. Crackdown on PFI by The Hindu Graphics What is the PFI? The Popular Front of India describes itself as a non-governmental organisation and a “neo-social movement” striving for the “empowerment of marginalized”, … [Read more...] about The Popular Front of India, its origins, presence, and controversies
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Several prominent opposition leaders including Nationalist Congress Party's Sharad Pawar, Bihar Chief Minister and Janata Dal-United leader Nitish Kumar and National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah will share the dais at a rally being organised by Indian National Lok Dal in Haryana's Fatehabad on Sunday. IMAGE: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar with NCP chief Sharad Pawar in New Delhi. Rashtriya Janata Dal leader and Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav, Communist Party of India-Marxist's Sitaram Yechury and Bharatiya Janata Party's Birender Singh will also attend the rally to mark the birth anniversary of former deputy prime minister and INLD founder Devi Lal. The coming together of so many regional satraps is seen as part of efforts to forge opposition unity, and Kumar and RJD president Lalu Prasad are also likely to meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi after the rally to take the process forward. "It will be a historic meeting that will mark the … [Read more...] about Top opposition leaders to share dais at Haryana rally
Bharatiya Janata Party national president JP Nadda on Sunday directed party workers to hold meetings after collectively watching Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Mann ki Baat at the booth level. IMAGE: BJP national president JP Nadda speaking at party workers in Kottayam, Kerala, September 25, 2022. Nadda claimed that over the years the number of people listening to the PM's programme has increased each month. "I would like to request all of you that in BJP every district presidents, every mandalam president, taluk president and area president should take the initiative of witnessing the Mann ki Baat collectively at booth level," he said. "After the booth level witnessing of the Mann ki Baat , they should assemble, gather together and have a BJP meeting," he said. The direction by Nadda, who is on a two-day visit to Kerala, came while speaking to party members and supporters at Aluva near Kochi after the PM's monthly radio programme was broadcast. He … [Read more...] about Hold booth level meets after watching Mann ki Baat: Nadda to Kerala BJP
Kerala police have beefed up security in the state and issued directions to the district police chiefs to ensure law and order after the radical Islamic outfit Popular Front of India (PFI) called for a state-wide hartal on Friday. The dawn-to-dusk hartal was called by the PFI to protest against the raids in the offices and residences of its leaders and their subsequent arrests on Thursday by the NIA and other agencies for allegedly supporting terror activities in the country. A statement issued by the police said stern action will be taken against those who violate the law. "All the policemen in the state will be deployed for the maintenance of law and order, " the statement said. Meanwhile, the state-run KSRTC has informed that it will operate as usual. The transport corproation said special services to hospitals, airports and railway stations will be arranged if necessary and will also seek police protection, if needed. PFI on Thursday had said a hartal will be … [Read more...] about PFI Protest: Security Beefed Up In Kerala, Police Warn Of Stern Action Against Miscreants
The BJP-dominated Municipal Corporation here has decided to rechristen several city areas after right-wing ideologues and freedom fighters ahead of the civic body polls later this year, a move the Opposition described as politically motivated. However, Lucknow Mayor Sanyukta Bhatia says it aims at shrugging off the British legacy and honouring people who struggled for the country's freedom and progress. The new names were decided at a meeting of the MC's executive committee and have been sent to the government for approval, civic body officials said. According to the proposals, names of Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Jana Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mookerjee and VHP leader Ashok Singhal are among those suggested. The executive committee approved the proposal to rechristen the Burlington crossing in Lucknow after Mr. Singhal, who is known for his hardline Hindutva views. Mr. Singhal was also at the forefront of the Ram Mandir movement in Ayodhya. The civic body has decided to … [Read more...] about Lucknow civic body clears proposals to rename localities after right-wing ideologues, freedom fighters
At a time when the Eknath Shinde faction, which has formed a government with the BJP in Maharashtra, is trying to prove its Hindutva credentials in the tussle for control of the Shiv Sena , there was a surprise development last week. The Minority Development Department of the state government announced the commissioning of a study on “the social, educational and economic status of the Muslim community” in 56 cities in six revenue divisions of the state, which have a sizeable Muslim population. The study is to be conducted by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS). State Watch | Seizing on Vedanta-Foxconn row, MVA taps into old faultlines, new rage to turn the tables on BJP-Shinde While some are seeing the move as a tentative outreach towards the Muslim community, whose support could determine the results in a substantial number of wards in the coming BMC polls soon, others see it as a balancing act at a time that the Shinde faction is trying to project … [Read more...] about Shinde Sena-BJP govt’s Muslim survey plans: Why, and is there a what next?