Srinagar: The National Investigating Agency (NIA) will be questioning Legislative Assembly member Engineer Rasheed once again on Wednesday in the alleged funding case.
In the first such case, the NIA summoned Rasheed – famous also as Engineer Rasheed – to New Delhi in the RC-10/2017/NIA/DLI case registered on 30 May over alleged Pakistani funding to the pro-freedom camp in J&K for “subversive activities”.
Engineer Rasheed represents Langate, of Handwara district, in the J&K Legislature and has won from the seat twice since 2008.
“Since 11 am, Engineer (Rasheed) was questioned by NIA officials up to 7:30 pm today,” the Langate MLA’s spokesperson, Inam-un-Nabi, told Kashmir Reader.
“The NIA officials have asked him to attend questioning once again on Wednesday,” said Inam who accompanied Rasheed in Delhi.
Rasheed is an independent lawmaker in the state legislature but also heads the Awami Ittihad Party.
The NIA summons delivered on September 8 have been criticised by opposition parties in Kashmir, which have termed it a “serious issue”.
The case has been filed against the Hurriyat Conference and 10 persons so far, including seven top pro-freedom leaders, have been arrested and are undergoing detention in New Delhi. The case is registered at NIA Police Station, New Delhi, following a Ministry of Home Affairs (GoI) Order, F.No. 11011/26/2017-IS.IV, dated 30th of May, 2017.
Speaker J&K Legislative Assembly Kavinder Gupta said that the NIA informed his office before summoning the Langate MLA and that “it was matter of only questioning”. The opposition lawmakers even asked the speaker to intervene in the case.
Several others, including lawyers, chartered accountants and trade leaders, have been questioned in the NIA case.
The NIA even called a PhD scholar of the University of Kashmir (KU), Aala Fazli, who was questioned for four days last week and was asked to report back at NIA headquarters today.
However a family member of Fazli told this newspaper that “he was not keeping well”.
“Aala Fazli is in New Delhi but he is not well as he suffering from intestinal infection,” the family member said. “He sent a mail and also FAXed a letter to NIA officials early today in which he informed them that he cannot appear for questioning.”
The summoning of Fazli evoked student protests at KU, the Islamic University of Science and Technology and the Central University of Kashmir here, following which the KU authorities shot off letters to the Governor, the Chief Minister and the Director General of Police to look into the case.
The KU Pharmacy department, where Aala is pursuing his PhD, has described him as a brilliant student with scientific acumen.
NIA spokesperson Alok Mittal – an Inspector General-rank police officer – did not respond to Kashmir Reader’s calls.