Srinagar: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Tuesday raided the house of a prominent businessman in downtown Srinagar in connection with the “terror-funding case” it has been probing since last year.
Sources said that government forces cordoned off Nowhatta area in downtown Srinagar early Tuesday morning before a team of NIA raided the house of businessman Ajaz Ahmad Hakak.
Hakak is the latest to be raided, after several resistance leaders and some businessmen, in connection with the “terror funding case”.
A police official at Nowhatta police station confirmed that Ajaz’s residence in Khawaja Bazar was raided by NIA sleuths. He refused to divulge any details. “I am not authorised to talk on NIA matters,” he said.
The police official also declined to comment on whether any material was seized from the house of Ajaz. However, sources said that some documents and electronic gadgets were seized from Ajaz’s house.
Repeated attempts to contact the NIA spokesperson failed.
In making arrests over the “terror-funding case”, the NIA has alleged that resistance leaders and businessmen in Kashmir were receiving money through hawala and other sources to fund militancy and stone-pelting protests. Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) chief and 26/11 Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed is also named as accused in the case. Those arrested so far include spokespersons of both the factions of the Hurriyat Conference, Ayaz Akbar and Advocate Shahidul Islam, and two sons of United Jehad Council (UJC) chief Muhammad Yousuf Shah alias Syed Salahuddin.
The Delhi High Court on September 18 this year granted bail to Kashmiri businessman Zahoor Watali, who was arrested by the NIA for his alleged role in the “terror-funding case”. The Supreme Court, however, stayed the high court’s bail order granted to Watali.
The NIA made several arrests last year after conducting raids at more than two dozen places in Kashmir, Jammu, Haryana and Delhi. Democratic Freedom Party (DFP) chief Shabir Ahmad Shah was also at the same time arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in July 2017 in connection with a money-laundering case of 2015.