Two individuals from Varanasi were detained on Sunday by the Anti-Terrorist Squad of the Uttar Pradesh Police due to their claimed connections to the outlawed Popular Front of India.
The defendants, Parvez Ahmed and Raees Ahmed, were carrying an award of Rs 50,000 each when they were arrested in a case filed under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) in 2022, according to a news release released by the police.
The Popular Front of India (PFI)'s extremist ideology was disseminated in Varanasi by both of the accused. It said that the two were sought for in a number of cases filed in Varanasi under different IPC and UAPA provisions.
The Union government prohibited PFI last year due to its participation in illegal operations.
The ATS said that the pair participated in actions against the government at the 2019 anti-CAA/NRC rally.
The pair had previously attended PFI training sessions in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, and Kerala, among other areas. The two had been living in secret for the previous year and had utilised the training to develop a cadre.
According to officials, the arrests were made as part of a day-long special campaign against the PFI in the state that the Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS) ran.
According to the statement, the operation included the activation of field units from the ATS in Noida, Saharanpur, Meerut, Moradabad, Kanpur, Lucknow, Bahraich, Gorakhpur, Varanasi, and Azamgarh.
For the operations at different locations around the state, thirty special teams were organised, and roughly 70 persons were interrogated.
“The accused are now being interrogated in depth. To learn more about their 'anti-national' actions, data analysis is also being done on their electronic devices and social media presence. Based on further investigation and research, more legal action would be taken, it was said.