NEW DELHI: Reacting to the Centre's ban on the Popular Front of India (PFI), the Congress on Wednesday said that the party is against all ideologies and institutions that misuse religion to spread prejudice, hate, bigotry and violence.
Without mentioning any organisation, Congress General Secretary in-charge of communications Jairam Ramesh in a statement said, "The Congress Party has always been and will continue to be against all forms and types of communalism-- majority, minority makes no difference."
The Congress's policy has always been to fight uncompromisingly all ideologies and institutions that "abuse religion for polarising our society, that misuse religion to spread prejudice, hate, bigotry and violence," Ramesh said.
"This fight is of utmost priority to preserve, protect and celebrate the secular and composite construct of our society and nationhood," the Congress statement read.
On Tuesday, the Union home ministry had declared the Popular Front of India (PFI), and its associates or affiliates or fronts, as an unlawful association with immediate effect for five years, under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.
"PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts operate openly as a socio-economic, educational and political organization but, they have been pursuing a secret agenda to radicalise a particular section of the society working towards undermining the concept of democracy and show sheer disrespect towards the constitutional authority and constitutional set up of the country," said the government notification.
The notification said PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts have been indulging in unlawful activities, which are prejudicial to the integrity, sovereignty and security of the country and have the potential to disturb public peace and communal harmony of the country and support militancy in the country.
Along with PFI, the ban is also imposed on its fronts, including Rehab India Foundation (RIF), Campus Front of India (CFI), All India Imams Council (AIIC), National Confederation of Human Rights Organisation (NCHRO), National Women's Front, Junior Front, Empower India Foundation and Rehab Foundation, Kerala, as an "unlawful association".
The notification clearly mentioned that the ban has been imposed against PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts for "indulging in unlawful activities, which are prejudicial to the integrity, sovereignty and security of the country and have the potential of disturbing public peace and communal harmony of the country and supporting militancy in the country.
The Centre issued the ban citing the investigation of its agencies, mentioning "the investigations have established clear linkages between PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts".
The notification mentions that the criminal activities and brutal murders have been carried out by PFI cadres with the sole objective of "disturbing public peace and tranquility and creating reign of terror in the public mind".