Expressing its stance on Popular Front, CPM state secretary MV Govindan has said that an extremist organisation cannot be eliminated with a ban. The leader’s remarks come amidst the Centre’s nationwide crackdown on Popular Front of India (PFI) alleging terror links.
Last week, the PFI offices at 93 centres in 15 Indian states, including Kerala were raided by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and other agencies resulting in a number of arrests.
In protest, the PFI organised a 12-hour hartal in Kerala leading to widespread destruction of property and even injuries to members of the public.
It is in this context that Govindan’s remarks gained prominence. Addressing a public meeting organised by the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) at Kattakkada in the state capital on Monday, Govindan said that a ban was not the solution.
“No terrorist organisation can be eliminated by banning it. If one tries to ban a part of it, the consequence will be giving more impetus to communalism,” said Govindan. He added taht both majority and minority communslism were battling the Kerala government.
The PFI is responsible for the hand chopping incident from 2010, in which a Kerala lecturer TJ Joseph had his right hand chopped alleging blasphemy. At least 13 PFI members were convicted for the crime later.
Recently, Maharashtra Congress president Nana Patole had demanded a ban on PFI alleging raising of pro-Pakistan slogans in Pune.