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Centre extends ban on Deendar Anjuman

Syed Amin Jafri in Hyderabad | July 07, 2005 18:07 IST

The Central government has extended the ban on Deendar Anjuman, a fundamentalist religious organisation responsible for a series of blasts in places of worship in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Goa in 2000, for a further two years.

The organisation was declared "unlawful" by the government  in 2001 after its links with Pakistan were established. The organisation was accused of indulging in communal and anti-national activities, which were detrimental to peace and communal harmony.

According to an official release, the Central government was of the opinion that "if the unlawful activities of Deendar Anjuman are not curbed and controlled, the association will try to create tension among various communities with a view to disturb the social fabric of the country."

The organisation might also try to reorganise itself and indulge in sabotage of vital installations and hence there was an extension of the ban on Deendar Anjuman for two more years under the provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

Deendar Anjuman is accused of causing explosions in nine churches, a temple and a mosque. This sectarian group is also charged with engaging in distribution of objectionable anti-Christian literature and pamphlets and indulging in espionage activities.

The AP police had filed 14 criminal cases against 50 Deendar Anjuman activists in connection with serial blasts carried out at places of worship at Machilipatnam,  Vijayawada, Medak, Vikarabad, Tadepalligudem, Ongole and Guntur with a view to create communal tension. The accused were arrested in July 2000. While seven of the accused, who were Pakistani nationals, were at large, three accused died.

A special court trying the serial bomb blasts sentenced 39 activists of the outlawed outfit to six-months imprisonment for criminal conspiracy in November 2004. Five of the 39 accused were also sentenced to undergo four years' rigorous imprisonment and pay a fine of Rs 1,000 each under section 5 of the Explosives Substances Act for possessing explosive substances. Both punishments ran concurrently.

The outfit's present religious head Zia-ul-Hassan, based at Mardan in Pakistan, developed contacts with the Inter Services Intelligence and organised sabotage activities in south India. He had plans to create communal flare-ups in India.

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