Houses searched of JKLF leaders, associates of Geelani, Shabir Shah
Srinagar: The houses of senior Hurriyat Conference leaders were among 11 places raided by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday, as part of its investigation into alleged funding for “subversive activities in Jammu and Kashmir”.
For the second consecutive day today, NIA sleuths raided the houses of Ghulam Nabi Sumjhi and Agha Syed Hassan Al Mosavi Al Safvi in Anantnag and Budgam, respectively. Sumjhi is the secretary general of the Syed Ali Geelani-led Hurriyat Conference and Agha is its executive member.
Sources said that the NIA sleuths raided the residence of Agha Hassan at Shariat Abad in Budgam soon after sunrise. “The raids continued for over 9 hours,” they said. “There was heavy deployment of forces and the area where Agha lives was cordoned off.”
They informed that some people gathered in the inner areas near the residence of Agha and raised pro-freedom slogans. “But nobody could come near the residence in the day due to the forces’ deployment.”
“In the evening, hundreds of people came out of a local Imam Bara and marched towards the residence of Agha, following which the NIA team left,” the sources said.
SHO Budgam Rafi Ahmad told Kashmir Reader, “The NIA team left the residence of Agha Hassan around 7pm and reached Srinagar safely. Some slogans were raised but the situation is okay.”
NIA spokesperson Alok Mittal told Kashmir Reader that nine locations were searched in Kashmir on Thursday. “In continuation of the searches conducted yesterday, the NIA carried out searches at 11 more locations today (9 in Kashmir valley and one each in Jammu and Gurugram),” he said.
“These searches have been conducted in connection with the Jammu and Kashmir Terror Funding case and the LoC Trade case,” Mittal said.
Besides, he said, “houses of close aides of Shabir Ahmad Shah including Zameer Sheikh (Srinagar) and Razzaq Choudhary (Jammu) were searched.”
Shah is a member of the Geelani-led Hurriyat Conference and has been detained by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in New Delhi. He was arrested on July 25 in a money-laundering case.
Sources said that two mobile phones of Zameer were taken by the NIA sleuths who raided his house in Gulshan Nagar, Nowgam. “Zameer was taken to Humhama by NIA for questioning,” the sources said.
The NIA spokesperson said that offices were searched of the chartered accountants (CAs) of alleged Hawala operator Zahoor Ahmad Watali and the residences of suspect LoC traders.
“They are suspected of fuelling secessionist and subversive activities in Jammu and Kashmir,” Mittal claimed.
Watali, a top businessman who runs businesses outside India as well, is in NIA custody in Delhi.
Seven senior resistance leaders and three other persons including a businessman and a photojournalist have been arrested and are currently in detention in Delhi.
Sources said that NIA sleuths raided the joint residence of JKLF leader Showkat Ahmad Bakhshi and his brother Shakeel Ahmad Bakhshi in Bemina area of Srinagar today. Shakeel heads the Islamic Students’ League (ISL). “The NIA raided early today and searched the house till about 3pm,” sources said. “Showkat Bakhshi and his father were present in the house.”
A team of NIA also raided two residential houses in Kralpora area in Kupwara district. The houses reportedly belong to LoC traders.
Mittal said that during the NIA searches, “FDs (fixed deposits) worth over Rs 1 crore and a lot of incriminating material, suspect financial records, property-related documents and electronic devices were seized.”
He added that searches are “still continuing” and “the suspects are being questioned about the incriminating recoveries made from them”.
Mittal said that no person has been arrested by the NIA in these raids.
When asked whether the raids would continue, he said, “no comments.”
The NIA has 180 days at its disposal to file charge sheet in the case it registered on May 30 this year.