Is PFI The New SIMI? Role OF Fundamentalist Organisation In Instigating Hijab Protest Under Probe

| Updated: 17 February, 2022 4:15 pm IST

Contrary to what sympathisers claim, the ongoing Hijab protests in Karnataka and other parts of the country are allegedly being sponsored and propped by Popular Front of India (PFI) and its student’s wing Campus Front of India (CFI). Intelligence agencies investigating the tail of the hidden support behind this sudden eruption of protests for wearing hijab by the school and college going girls are attributing it to the active involvement of CFI and its cadres who have become hyper active in Karnataka in the recent past. There has been a demand to ban PFI as it is involved in fanning sentiments against the Centre and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led governments in other states and also providing funds for subversive activities.

Sufi Khanqaah Association has launched a march to Delhi. Members of Sufi Akhanqaah Association are traversing through Kannauj, Mainouri, Etah, Hathras, Aligarh, Buandshahr, Gautam Budh Nagar and Ghaziabad and are expected to converge at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi on February 20, to demand a complete ban on the activities of PFI. Members of Sufi association led by Habibur Rehman Niyaji, Mufti Waseem Ashraf, Sufi Qausar Majidi and Khalid Naqvi Haqqani and people from Sufi shrines have taken up cudgels against PFI and its anti-society activities.

Earlier, the Education Minister of Karnataka BC Nagesh had announced that Karnataka Government is probing the involvement of CFI for instigating young girl students who has no problems wearing uniforms to pre-university schools. Trouble started only after CFI jumped into the fray and “counseled” girl students to press for Hijab. Nagesh said that Basavraj Bommai Government was firm in its decision to ban Hijab in schools and will not back down. Nagesh also said that the government would take action after the state police submits its report about CFI and PFI.

It may be recalled that the Special Cell of Delhi Police had found evidence of PFI’s involvement in providing funds to the anti-CAA protests in Shaheen Bagh. PFI was also blamed for instigating Meerut riots. The Enforcement Directorate has submitted a report about its clandestine funding.  Sources in security agencies said PFI had covered its tracks well to avoid its footprints in CCA protests and subsequent North east Delhi riots. Centre is seized of the issue and corrective measures will be taken after investigation about the nefarious activities of PFI is completed.

Let us take a look at PFI and how it came into existence. PFI is an Islamic fundamentalist organisation with its headquarters in Shaheen Bagh of South east Delhi. It has strong bases in coastal states of Kerala and Karnataka and its top leadership hails primarily from Kerala. Security agencies noticed PFI’s emergence during the ‘Empower India Conference of 2007 at Bengaluru’ which saw the merger of Karnataka Forum for Dignity, National Democratic Front of Kerala and Manitha Neethi  Pasarai of Tamil Nadu.

Central agencies have evidence to suggest that the present day PFI is nothing but a new form of banned Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). PFI was given shape by the Islamic think tank after the banning of SIMI. Dossiers available with agencies have listed ex SIMI cadres as the state and national level office bearers of PFI. It may be recalled that the Kerala government had produced clinching documents before Kerala High Court in 2012 in its bid to ban PFI and had then said that it was nothing but the resurrection of SIMI.

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