NIA Raids on Hurriyat And Others Continue
SRINAGAR: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) for the second day today raided two more places in the capital Srinagar in connection with the 'hawala funding' of separatists caught in 'cash-for-unrest' sting.
Sources in J&K Police, which is assisting the sleuths of the agency, said the home of spokesperson of Syed Ali Geelani's Hurriyat Conference, Ayaz Akbar, was raided in Maloora area during which some documents were seized.
"Another team of NIA raided the house of a businessman in Bemina area at the same time and also recovered some documents from the place. More raids are expected in coming days," sources said.
The raids come in the aftermath of a sting operation carried out by a Delhi-based news channel with an anti-Kashmir slant which had purportedly showed some senior Hurriyat leaders admitting to receiving and spending cash to keep the streets on boil in the Valley.
Following the sting, the NIA had launched a preliminary inquiry into the 'revelations' made by the Hurriyat leaders which was later converted into a regular case, naming Geelani, JuD chief Hafiz Sayeed and militant outfits, Lashkar-e-Toiba and Hizbul Mujahideen as accused in the case.
Yesterday, the NIA teams conducted searches at the residences, offices and commercial establishments of alleged financiers, hawala operators and office bearers of some of the separatist groups in connection with the case with about Rs 1.15 crore, two laptops and some other electronic gadgets seized.
Those who faced the NIA heat yesterday included Nayeem Khan, Farooq Dar, Altaf Fantosh, Raja Mairaj, Zafar Akbar, Zahoor Watali, Shahid ul Islam, Noor Kalwal, Raja Zahoor Khan, Muhammad Sultan Tangnuu, Nazir Ahmad Mir alias Nazir Gas, Farooq Ahmad Wani, Muhammad Sultan Chandu,Dr Bashir Ahmad Bhat and others.
The joint Hurriyat Conference has termed the raids as a "psychological crackdown" against the "freedom loving people" of Jammu and Kashmir. “The hype and sensationalism around it (raids) just goes on to show the desperate attempt by government of India to vilify and discredit the resistance leadership and in turn discredit the people's freedom movement,” a Hurriyat statement said.
“While India openly admits to being at war with the people of Kashmir and subjects them to State oppression, it has simultaneously launched a propaganda war to discredit the leadership and people's struggle for which tremendous sacrifices have been made,” Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik said in the statement.
Meanwhile, condemning the raids, Kashmir's business community termed it as ”witch hunting campaign launched to hurt our economic interests.” "It is a ploy to crush us economically. New Delhi wants to create fear psychosis among business community so that they would muzzle the genuine voice of Kashmiris,” Chairman of Kashmir Economic Alliance, Muhammad Yaseen Khan said.
(Cover Photograph from Greater Kashmir)