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NIA quizzes 3 Kashmiri separatists including Nayeem Khan over Pak funding

The NIA team had asked Nayeem Khan, Farooq Ahmed Dar alias ‘Bitta Karate’ and Gazi Javed Baba to appear before it for their explanation on an expose on a television channel where they had claimed receiving funds from Pakistan.

india Updated: May 21, 2017 00:08 IST
Rajesh Ahuja
Rajesh Ahuja
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
NIA,Nayeem Khan,Hurriyat Conference
Senior separatist leader Nayeem Khan during a press conference in Srinagar, May 20, 2017. (Waseem Andrabi / HT Photo )

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday questioned three Kashmiri separatists accused of receiving money from Pakistan to fuel unrest in the Valley.

“Farookh Dar alias Bitta Karate was questioned in Srinagar regarding the hawala and terror funding issue. The questioning of Nayeem Khan and Ghazi Javed Baba is still going on,” said a spokesman of the federal anti-terror agency.

He added that the accused have also been asked to produce certain documents for examination.

Later in the evening, the NIA raided Jammu and Kashmir National Front’s chairman Nayeem Khan’s house.

Read more | Separatist Geelani says army-run schools indoctrinating Kashmiri kids, BJP refutes charge

The NIA is verifying contents of a sting operation carried out by a TV channel in which the separatists were seen talking about receiving money from Pakistan for funding violent activities including torching of schools and stone pelting.

“The hotel in Srinagar in which the sting operation took place, has been identified. The NIA team is completing formalities of identification of room and collection of records,” said the spokesman.

He said the agency is probing all angles of the funding of separatist leaders.

Earlier on Saturday, Jammu and Kashmir National Front and its chairman Nayeem Khanwere suspendedfrom the Hurriyat Conference by the Geelani faction.

However, Nayeem Khan denied the allegations of receiving funds from Pakistan, claiming the sting operation was “fake and doctored”. Addressing a press conference in Srinagar, he alleged that the media group had used his statements out of context to “defame the Kashmir struggle”.

Investigators have also collected the copies of the FIRs of about 150 cases and analysing these FIRs registered in the Valley in the recent past regarding damage caused to the schools and public property as part of the larger conspiracy to perpetuate violence and chaos in Kashmir.

(With input from Toufiq Rashid in Srinagar)

First Published: May 20, 2017 21:18 IST