Bahrain warns group supporting Maudany with legal action

February 27th, 2008 - 7:21 pm ICT by admin  

Dubai, Feb 27 (IANS) Bahrain has threatened an organization raising funds for an Indian political activist with legal action if it continued with its activities. The Anvarul Islam Cultural Forum (AICF) Bahrain Chapter was formed “to spread awareness and promote charity activities” of Abdul Nasir Maudany, the alleged mastermind of 13 bombings at 11 locations in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, Feb 14, 1998, which claimed 60 lives.

Maudany was charged with spreading communal hatred, criminal conspiracy and sedition, but was acquitted in August last year for lack of evidence.

He is now a leader of the Kerala-based People’s Democratic Party.

The AICF Bahrain Chapter is planning a meeting Friday in Hoora but Bahrain’s social development ministry has threatened it with legal action if it went ahead without officially registering first.

“The Anvaarul Islam Cultural Forum, as they call themselves, is not registered with the Social Development Ministry,” the ministry’s non-governmental organzations director Najva Janahi told the Gulf Daily News.

“They are not allowed to hold any meeting. This would be totally illegal.”

She said the organisers and participants would be prosecuted and even stood the risk of losing their jobs and being deported, and added that nobody was allowed to collect money in Bahrain without a licence.

“Bahrain is a small country and it is not difficult to spot such unauthorised activities,” she was quoted as saying.

“We will grant them a licence to operate in Bahrain only after thorough scrutiny.”

However, AICF advisory committee member N. Saleem told the newspaper the meeting would go ahead as scheduled.

“We plan to go ahead with the meeting because we have checked with other associations who confirmed it was OK to hold the first meeting before being registered,” he said, adding that the organization would approach the ministry for registration after the meeting.

“Madani supporters are scattered and we aim to bring them together. The forum is all about charity.”

He denied the allegations that Maudany was involved in terror-related activities and said, “Abdul Nasser Maudany is at the forefront of a campaign for the welfare of society and his philanthropist programmes are reaching new horizons,” he said.

“We don’t intend to politically support Maadany, but are in favour of his charity activities.”

Stating that the organization members came from a democratic country like India, Saleem said, “Maudany has been acquitted and accepted by the Indian political system.”

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