Terror funding case: NIA raids 11 places in Kashmir, New Delhi in crackdown against separatists

The NIA on Thursday carried out searches at 10 places in Jammu and Kashmir and the national capital in connection with its probe into the funding of terrorism.

PTI September 07, 2017 21:38:37 IST
Terror funding case: NIA raids 11 places in Kashmir, New Delhi in crackdown against separatists

New Delhi: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday carried out searches at 11 places in Jammu and Kashmir and the national capital region in connection with its probe into the funding of terror activities and channeling of ill-gotten money through cross-LoC trade.

Terror funding case NIA raids 11 places in Kashmir New Delhi in crackdown against separatists

Representational image. AFP

NIA sleuths found three arms — a pistol, a double-barrel gun and a .315 rifle — in possession of Razzaq Choudhary, a close aide of separatist leader Shabir Shah, officials said.

The arms were not seized as Choudhary produced licence for the weapons, they added.

An NIA spokesman said nine places in Kashmir and one each in Jammu and Gurugram (Haryana) were searched in connection with the Jammu and Kashmir terror funding case and channelling of funds through trade across the Line of Control (LoC).

Prominent among those searched include Hurriyat leaders Ghulam Nabi Sumji and Syed Aga Hassan Budgami, and close aides of Shabbir Shah — Zameer Sheikh and Razzaq Choudhary, the spokesman said.

Badgami, a prominent separatist Shia leader, and Sumji are part of the pro-Pakistan, Syed Ali Shah Geelani-headed faction of the Hurriyat Conference.

Shabir Shah is at present in judicial custody after the Enforcement Directorate arrested him last month in connection with an earlier case of money laundering.

He said the offices of the Chartered Accountants of Hawala operator Zahoor Watali and residences of suspect cross-LoC traders were also searched as they were suspected of fuelling secessionist and subversive activities in Kashmir Valley.

"During searches, fixed deposits worth over Rs 1 crore, and lots of incriminating material, suspect financial records, property-related documents and electronic devices have been seized," the spokesman said.

Watali, who is considered as a political broker, was arrested by the NIA last month.

The NIA registered a case on 30 May in which the leader of the Pakistan-based Jamaat-ud-Dawa and banned terrorist outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba, Hafiz Saeed, was named as an accused.

The NIA has arrested nine people in the case of alleged funding of terror and subversive activities in Kashmir Valley to fuel unrest there.

The case was registered for raising, receiving and collecting funds through illegal means, including hawala channels, for funding activities such as causing disruption in the valley by stone pelting, burning schools, damaging public property and waging war against India.

This is for the first time since the rise of militancy in Jammu and Kashmir in the early 1990s that a central probe agency has conducted raids in connection with the funding of terrorist and separatist groups.

The searches were also part of the NIA's probe into alleged irregularities in the cross-LoC trade. In this connection, the NIA had carried out searches on traders at trade facilitation centres at Salamabad in North Kashmir's Baramulla district and Chakan-da-bagh in Poonch district of the Jammu region.

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