The Madras High Court today dismissed a PIL seeking direction to the Tamil Nadu government to ban 'radical' outfit Popular Front of India (PFI) for reportedly indulging in activities aimed at disturbing peace and harmony of the country.
"It is not for this court to decide which organisation should be banned and which organisation might continue. That is in the realm of the executive of the state," the first bench comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice P T Asha, said.
Petitioner K Gopinath submitted that he had already made a representation to the Centre and Tamil Nadu government on April 27 this year that PFI, started as a cover to the banned Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) "is indulging in activities that would disturb the peace and harmony of the country".
However, the representation has not been acted upon till now, he said.
Gopinath submitted that the Ministry of Home affairs in its May 5, 2018 letter to the Tamil Nadu government had stated that "public order and police are primarily the responsibility of state governments and requisite action is taken wherever necessary".
The petitioner said PFI was started in Kerala as a successor of National Development Front in 2006.
It was banned by the Jharkhand government and a case was pending in the Kerala High Court, where the state government had presented sufficient material to show the unlawful and anti-social activities of PFI and its founders, he submitted.
The petitioner said similar action was being contemplated by the government of Karnataka.
He also referred to the claim of retired Army officer
P C Katoch that PFI had links with ISI and said that in July 2010, Kerala Police had unearthed country-made bombs, weapons and CDs, including documents containing malicious propaganda from PFI activists.
Gopinath also alleged that intelligence agencies had claimed that PFI had a role in three bomb blasts in the country in 2012, 2013 and 2015.
The court has to take cognisance and on its own volition, ban all extremist outfits like PFI, he said and prayed for a direction to the authorities concerned to consider his representation and ensure proper action.
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