6 linked to PFI held in Thane, Navi Mumbai; court grants them bail
The National Investigation Agency and different teams of Thane and Navi Mumbai police raided several places on Monday night and detained six persons associated with Popular Front of India (PFI) from Mumbra, Bhiwandi, Kalyan, Navi Mumbai and Panvel; all the six were produced in different local courts and their custody was sought for 14 days; however, the courts rejected the custody and granted them bail
The National Investigation Agency (NIA), along with different teams of Thane and Navi Mumbai police, raided several places on Monday night and detained six persons associated with Popular Front of India (PFI) from Mumbra, Bhiwandi, Kalyan, Navi Mumbai and Panvel under Section 151(3) of The Code of Criminal Procedure (Arrest to prevent the commission of cognizable offences).
All the six were produced in different local courts and their custody was sought for 14 days. However, the courts rejected the custody and granted them bail.
The raids against various members associated with the PFI began last week when three persons were detained from Bhiwandi and Navi Mumbai. On Monday night, in similar raids, the NRI Coastal police and Panvel City police detained two associated with PFI. The one detained by NRI Coastal police as a preventive action was identified as Abdul Rehman Abdul Rauf Shaikh (38), a resident of Seawoods New Sector 50.
“We detained him as a preventive measure after finding objectionable materials from him. Further investigations will be done by NIA and if required they will arrest and take custody,” Vivek Pansare, Deputy Commissioner of Police, zone II, said.
According to sources, the objectionable material includes a letter head of PFI, a letter from the PFI Chief in Delhi to Shaikh, which mentions that Muslims in the country are undergoing injustice. “The content in the letter was provocative in nature,” the source added.
Meanwhile, the one detained from Panvel was identified as Abdul Raheem Yakub Sayyed (46), a resident of 52 Bunglow Road in Panvel. While Shaikh worked as an interior designer, Sayyed worked as a contractor. Shaikh was a resident of Darave village in Nerul wherein the PFI office too is present. Around four months back, he shifted to Seawoods.
In Mumbra, Bhiwandi and Kalyan, the official sources were keeping an eye on various persons since last week and after allegedly noticing an increase in activities, they were detained.
Dawood Shaikh, 57, and Abdul Shekhani, 37, were detained from Mumbra on the basis that they were planning to protest in the future and it would create law and order issues in the region.
As per sources, Dawood is a social worker in Mumbra and gives training to the youngsters as per their PFI programme and Shekhani, who runs a garment shop in Mumbra, is the head of the PFI in the region and looks after all other group members’ activities.
The duo’s lawyer, Abdul Babbar, said, “The police produced my clients in court demanding 14 days’ custody. I explained to the court that it’s a matter of freedom of life. Police cannot just assume and steal the freedom of life of any person. It’s a basic human right and the court should not allow us to do the same. They do not have any plan to protest and even if they have, it is their right under our Constitution.”
The other two PFI members who have been detained are Asif Ansari from Bhiwandi and Fardeen Paikar from Kalyan.
A senior police officer from Thane said, “We have arrested four members to prevent them from creating any law and order issue in the region. The court has released all of them on bail after hearing the matter.”