Seven Kashmiri separatists were arrested by NIA (National Investigation Agency). They were charged of receiving funds from Pakistan to sponsor terrorist activities and protests by stone-throwers in the Kashmir Valley.
The Hurriyat has called for a shut down in the Valley to protests against the arrests.
India has for years accused Pakistan for funding and training Kashmiri militants and for the first time, has arrested senior members of the Hurriyat Conference for having links with Pakistan for terror funding.
The seven separatists:
Among these seven separatists, one of them is the son-in-law of Sayed Ali Shah Geelani, Altaf Shah, and his three key aides, Ayaz Akbar, Me’raj Kalwal and Bashir Ahmad Bhat. The other three separatists are Nayeem Khan, Farooq Ahmad Dar and Shahid-ul-Islam. They are close aides of Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, a moderate among militants. They all run the separatist agenda of Geelani in Kashmir Valley to unify Jammu and Kashmir with Pakistan.
Farooq Ahmad Dar aka Bitta karate was arrested in Delhi and others were arrested in Srinagar and will be brought to the capital.
Nayeem Khan, one of the arrested accused was suspended from the Hurriyat after he was seen in a sting operation conducted by a news channel. He had admitted that the Hurriyat has received funds from Pakistan for the militant activities in the Valley.
Raids by NIA:
The arrest was made after two month long investigation by the NIA. During the investigation, NIA has also conducted various raids. The separatists were questioned for weeks before the arrest.
NIA has conducted various raids in Jammu, Delhi, Srinagar, and Haryana and have seized evidences including account books, Rs. 2 Crore in cash, letterheads of terrorists groups including the Lashkar and the Hizbul. They have also seized various property related documents, pendrives, laptops, mobile phones, receipts and vouchers of hawala payments and so on. These evidences prove a direct link between the terror activities and funding from terror groups based in Pakistan.
NIA, in its FIR has named Hafeez Saeed, the head of Jamaat-ul Dawah, a front for the Lashkae-e-Taiba (LeT) as the prime accused as it conducts the Hurriyat Conference and Hizbul Mujahideen.