Mirwaiz, Yasin Malik detained ahead of Hurriyat meeting
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Mirwaiz, Yasin Malik detained ahead of Hurriyat meeting

Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and JKLF chairman Yasin Malik were to meet hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani on Monday to discuss NIA raids against the separatists.

india Updated: Jun 05, 2017 13:01 IST
Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik were to meet at Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s home to discuss NIA raids against Hurriyat leaders.(Agencies)

The Jammu and Kashmir Police have detained two Kashmiri separatists ahead of a Monday meeting called to discuss the NIA raids on the homes of Hurriyat leaders.

Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front chairman Yasin Malik was taken into preventive custody on Monday, a night after Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, who heads the moderate faction of the separatist Hurriyat Conference, was put under house arrest.

The two were to attend a meeting at the home of hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani in downtown Srinagar.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday and Sunday searched the homes and offices of separatists as part of an investigation into charges of funds from Pakistan being used to stoke violent street protests in the Valley.

The NIA raided places across Kashmir, Delhi and Haryana. It allegedly recovered letterheads of the Hizbul Mujahideen and the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), laptops, mobile phones, gold jewellery and more than Rs 2.5 crore in cash in the first such crackdown on financing of separatists.

“The anti-Kashmiri state resorted to its usual tactic of curbing the leadership through force, once again showing that Kashmir is ruled by the forces might,’’ a Hurriyat spokesman said on Monday.

The NIA searched the homes of hardline Hurriyat spokesperson Ayaz Akbar, Geelani’s son-in-law Altaf Fatoosh and Mirwaiz faction’s spokesperson Shahidul Islam. Some businessmen are also on the anti-terror agency’s radar.

The separatist have described the raids as a witch hunt. In a joint statement on Sunday evening, Hurriyat leaders accused the government of targeting the business community to cripple Kashmir’s economy.

The raids began after the NIA turned a preliminary enquiry into the sources of funding of separatist leaders such as Geelani, Naeem Khan and Farooq Ahmed Dar into a first information report or a formal investigation.

The NIA FIR alleges that money received from Pakistan was being used to fund violence in Kashmir, including stone pelting on security forces and arson that largely targeted schools and government buildings.

“All top Hurriyat leaders including chairman of its hardline faction Syed Ali Shah Geelani will be summoned for questioning and they will be confronted with each other and the evidence brought out during the raids to take the probe further,” an NIA official had told HT.

First Published: Jun 05, 2017 12:39 IST