A 32-year-old alleged member of the Popular Front of India (PFI) was arrested by the Delhi Police Special Cell Monday for allegedly hatching a conspiracy to incite communal riots in several parts of Delhi. He was produced before a Delhi court, which sent him to four-day police custody.
The accused has been identified as Trilokpuri resident Mohd Danish. He was detained Sunday night. The arrest was made on Monday after an FIR was registered under IPC sections 147 (punishment for rioting), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy). The PFI, an alleged radical group, has been accused of funding protests against the Citizenship Act.
Danish, while being taken away by police, said: “I’m being wrongly framed. I took a loan of Rs 20 lakh, which they are showing as funding. The truth will come out. I used to visit Shaheen Bagh and take part in protests… I’m innocent.”
In Trilokpuri’s Block 27 Monday, a group of people huddled around Danish’s brother, discussing the arrest. The family has alleged Danish was picked up on fabricated charges of inciting violence during anti-CAA protests.
“The only reason he was arrested is because he is associated with PFI. The group is actively involved in social work, and Danish worked tirelessly for humanitarian causes. If the government thinks working for PFI is a crime, why isn’t the organisation banned? It is baseless that he would incite violence,” said Mohd Aslam, Danish’s brother.
Danish is pursuing law from a Ghaziabad university and runs a mobile repair shop in the area with his brother. Two weeks ago, his family claimed, police had taken Danish for “routine questioning” before letting him go.
An active social media user, Danish has been critical of the new citizenship law, the proposed NRC, and other government policies. “It is clear the government wants to suppress critical voices. He was an easy target. Our fight will continue in the courts,” said Aslam.
The family also claimed Danish was at home when violence broke out in Northeast Delhi. “We have CCTV footage to prove he never left the area,” claimed Aslam.
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