Chennai: Officials of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday conducted simultaneous raids at multiple locations in Tamil Nadu belonging to the Popular Front of India (PFI) on charges of alleged terror funding and money laundering.
Apart from terror funding charges, the raids were being held as part of the nation-wide search operations carried out by the NIA for organising training camps, and radicalising people to join proscribed organisations. While the NIA has registered multiple cases against several PFI members, the ED has launched investigations on charges of Money Laundering.
The NIA termed it as the “largest-ever investigation process till date”. Key functionaries, including PFI National Executive Coimmittee member A.S.Ismail in Coimbatore, whose house at Karumbukadai was searched, were arrested by the NIA and the Enforcement Directorate authorities, amid protests by the party cadres.
At least ten functionaries of PFI were arrested across the State. Reports received here s aid the raids were on in over 12 premises belonging to PFI across Tamil Nadu, including its headquarters at Puraswalkam area in Chennai city.
The raids were also on in 10 districts of Tamil Nadu including Madurai, Theni, Dindigul, Ramanathapuram, Cuddalore, Tirunelveli, Tenkasi and Chennai. Several PFI cadres were detained across the State following protests against the raids.
It may be noted that the NIA has raided the premises of PFI office bearers in Andhra Pradesh and Telengana a couple of days back and based on inputs received, follow up search operations are being carried out in TN,” sources said.