ED to register money laundering case against separatist leaders

08 September, 2017, 00:47 | Author: Sherri Guerrero
  • The National Investigation Agency raided the residence of Hurriyat leader Agha Syed Hassan in central Kashmir’s Budgam district

The National Investigation Agency raided the house of Hurriyat leader Agha Syed Hassan and seized almost Rs 2.20 crore cash in Kashmir's Budgam on Thursday.

On Wednesday, the agency had raided 24 places in the Kashmir Valley and in Delhi focusing mainly on traders, who allegedly have links with the funding case presently under probe by the NIA.

Eight persons including seven senior separatists and one businessman were arrested by NIA out of which one has turned approver in the case and has recorded his statement against anti-national activities of other Hurriyat leaders.

Aga Hassan is said to be close to Mirwaiz Umar Farooq.

The NIA sleuths seized FDs worth Rs 1 crore and other incriminating material during the raids and searches.

"Sumji's house and shopping complex in Bijbehara were searched for nearly five hours while shopkeepers in his complex were also questioned".

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Simultaneous raids were carried out by NIA teams on the houses of Ghulam Nabi Sumji, senior leader of Syed Ali Shah Geelani's Hurriyat group, Zameer Thakur, a close aide of Shabir Shah, and Showkat Bakshi and Shakeel Bakshi. NIA is a carrying out the professional task assigned to them.

SHO Budgam Rafi Ahmad told Kashmir Reader, "The NIA team left the residence of Agha Hassan around 7pm and reached Srinagar safely". He said the offices of the Chartered Accountants of Hawala operator Zahoor Watali and residences of suspect cross-LoC traders were also searched as they were suspected of fuelling secessionist and subversive activities in Kashmir Valley. The J&K police and the CRPF have laid siege around these locations to facilitate smooth raids, the official sources said.

Watali, a top businessman who runs businesses outside India as well, is in NIA custody in Delhi. This arrest came a day after Malik visited the residences of slain Hizbul Mujahideen militants Sabzar Ahmed Bhat and Faizan Muzaffar in Tral area of south Kashmir's Pulwama district.

He added that searches are "still continuing" and "the suspects are being questioned about the incriminating recoveries made from them".

The arrest comes a day after the Joint Hurriyat leadership of Kashmir announced to hold a day long protest in New Delhi outside the headquarters of National Investigation Agency (NIA) over arrests and warrants against dozens of hurriyat leaders since last few months.

Mittal said that no person has been arrested by the NIA in these raids.

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