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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Sep 2014

Omar wants NIA to investigate Liyaqat's arrest

Toufiq Rashid , Hindustan Times  Srinagar, March 23, 2013
First Published: 23:26 IST(23/3/2013) | Last Updated: 13:31 IST(24/3/2013)

Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah has asked the central government to order an independent inquiry into the arrest of Liyaqat Ali Shah, reportedly a former militant who was to surrender before the state authorities.

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"I spoke to (union) home minister (Sushil Kumar Shinde) and asked for a speedy, time-bound probe by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to establish the facts in this matter," Abdullah told Hindustan Times.

Abdullah was in Delhi to seek an appointment with Shinde to register a formal complaint in the case.

According to sources, Shinde has promised to hand over the case to the NIA on Monday. While Delhi Police claimed that Shah was the mastermind of a revenge attack for Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru's killing, the Jammu and Kashmir government maintains that he was an 'inactive militant' living in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir for the past 15 years and was on his way home in Kashmir to surrender.

According to sources, the chief minister sees the move by Delhi Police as a setback to his flagship project of facilitating the return of former militants to Kashmir.

As the home minister was out of the national capital, the chief minister had a "telephonic conversation" with him.

Meanwhile, sources said Shah's first wife Ameena Begum had applied for his amnesty on February 2, 2011, soon after the policy was approved. The application, under serial no 74, is with the Kupwara district administration. "Four months ago, I was informed that he can travel as he has got the necessary clearance," Ameena Begum said.

According to the family, Shah and other family members applied for passports in PoK 15 days ago. "Liyaqat told us 10 days ago that he was coming and we informed the authorities," she added.

The same was confirmed by Shah's second wife Aktar Biwi, who along with her 18-year-old daughter Jabeen, was travelling with him at the time of the arrest.

Echo in assembly

Jammu: Earlier on Saturday, in reply to concerns raised by MLAs Engineer Rashid and Nasir Aslam Wani in the state assembly, minister of state for home Sajjad Ahmed Kichloo said the state government had taken up the matter with Delhi Police.


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