Jammu and Kashmir police Wednesday arrested three separatist leaders shortly after National Investigation Agency (NIA) raid on their houses early this morning, official sources said. The NIA which is investigating a string of cases had launched a similar one on terror funding a year ago.
The separatists and traders are now being questioned to find out information about the overground workers of Hizbul Mujahideen or LeT, who were given the money to fuel the protests and violence in the valley following the killing of Hizbul commander Burhan Wani previous year. The accused will be flown to New Delhi for interrogation by NIA for their alleged involvement in receiving funds from Pakistan.Earlier this month, NIA had surveyed 23 places in Kashmir, Delhi and Haryana in connection with funding received from Pakistan for terror and violence in the valley. "That case is as good as closed", a senior NIA officer was quoted as saying by the paper. In the case related to a year ago, the NIA probed transactions amounting to Rs 38 crore from 17 accounts in four banks of south Kashmir for any suspected links to separatist groups or terrorists.
As per the paper, investigation was based on an input given by the Army that some bank accounts had suspicious transactions and withdrawals which may be oincided with stone-pelting incidents in the Valley.
A year down the line, the agency has found that all transactions through these bank accounts were legitimate and not connected in any way to terror funding. When the probe was launched a preliminary enquiry was registered.
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Naeem Khan, Bitta Karate and Javed Gazi Baba have been questioned at the NIA headquarters before.
The NIA even converted the PE into an FIR and in it, the agency has named Lashkar-e-Tayiba chief, Hafiz Saeed, Hizbul Mujahideen members among others.
They said the separatist leaders had been summoned to Delhi to face the NIA questioning on June 29. In one case, sources said, the agency had found an account to be in the name of a plumber from Pulwama.