Nellore/Anantapur: Teams of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) conducted searches on the houses of Popular Front of India (PFI) activists at Buchireddypalem in SPSR Nellore district as also in Kadapa, Nandyal, Kurnool and Guntur districts on Sunday.
This was based on suspicion that many in the pro-Muslim outfit have involvement in terrorist activities.
The teams were questioning several suspects in Guntur district amid allegations that they conspired to create enmity between different segments of the population.
At Buchireddypalem, the team searched the house of Shaik Iliyaz, 33, at Khaja Nagar. The sleuths seized a mobile phone and the personal diary of Iliyaz from the house and grilled his family members. The team faced an unpleasant situation when locals mobbed the house demanding an explanation from the sleuths for the search.
They also raised slogans such as ‘NIA Goback’ and squatted before the NIA team’s convoy of vehicles. The locals were undeterred even as the local SI said the police will be compelled to book cases if they continued with the protest. Police somehow managed to clear the way for NIA sleuths, who left from the area in a huff, sensing the mood of the people.
According to sources in police, Iliyaz underwent training organised by the PFI in Nizamabad sometime back and NIA booked a case against him under unlawful activities prevention act.
On August 26, NIA’s Hyderabad unit booked cases against Iliyaz under IPC sections 121A (conspiracy to commit offences punishable by section 121), 120-B (attempt to wage a war against the government of India), 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence) and 141 (Unlawful assembly) read with 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention).
An ITI dropout, Iliyaz lives with his wife at Buchireddypalem and is running a tiffin centre. Police said Iliyaz was absconding for the last three months and they believed he was still in touch with his family.
Meanwhile, BJP state general secretary Vishnuvardhan Reddy welcomed the searches by NIA while condemning the activities of PFI and the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) in Andhra Pradesh. He rebuked the ruling TRS in Telangana and the YSR Congress in AP for “indirectly supporting” the leaders of the PFI and SDPI.
A four-member team of NIA conducted the raids in Nandyal district headquarters. The team searched at houses in Two Town police station limits in Nandyal town.
PFI members from Nandyal alleged that the BJP government was misusing the NIA provisions to terrorise the Muslim youths through the raids.
“Even the opposition parties failed to condemn the act of BJP in terrorising innocent Muslim youths who are doing service to the society through the PFI,” they alleged and said they would move court against acts of intimidation of innocent Muslim youths through police raids....