Terror funding: NIA chargesheets Hafiz Saeed, Syed Salahuddin, 10 others

New Delhi: The NIA on Thursday filed a chargesheet against 12 people, including Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Hafiz Saeed and Hizbul Mujahideen head Syed Salahuddin, in a case related to alleged funding of terror and secessionist activities in the Kashmir Valley.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) filed the 1,279-page chargesheet before a designated court in Delhi and sought permission to continue its probe.

The judicial custody of 10 people arrested in connection with the case ended on Thursday.

Under the anti-terror law — the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act — the prosecuting agency has to file a chargesheet within 6 months, failing which the accused is eligible for bail.

NIA officials said they gathered substantial material and technical evidence during the probe. They said 60 locations were raided and 950 incriminating documents seized. There are 300 witnesses in the case.

The NIA had arrested Altaf Ahmad Shah alias Altaf Fantoosh, son-in-law of Syed Ali Shah Geelani; spokesperson of Mirwaiz Umer Farooq-led moderate Hurriyat Conference Shahid-ul-Islam; spokesperson of the Geelani-led faction of Hurriyat
Ayaz Akbar and separatists Nayeem Khan, Bashir Bhat alias Peer Saifullah and Raja Mehrajuddin Kalwal.

Noted businessman Zahoor Ahmed Watali was also arrested by the NIA in connection with the case, which was registered after the valley was rocked by violent protests following the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen poster boy Burhan Wani in a gunfight with security forces in 2016.

Former JKLF militant Bitta Karate, photo journalist Kamran Yusuf and Javed Ahmed Bhat have also been named in the chargesheet.

The NIA accused Saeed and Salahuddin of fomenting trouble and sending funds to the valley through non-banking channels, they said.

The FIR named Saeed as an accused, besides organisations such as the Hurriyat Conference (factions led by Geelani and Mirwaiz Farooq), Hizbul Mujahideen and Dukhtaran-e-Milat.

The NIA also recorded confessional statements on the flow of money, especially from Pakistan, from four people accused in a case related to the funding of “terror activities” in Kashmir.

The statements given before a judicial magistrate had tightened the case against the separatists who allegedly funded stone-pelters and spread unrest in Kashmir, the officials said.