New Delhi: Masarat Alam, the “poster boy” of stone-pelters and violent agitations in Kashmir valley, has revealed that there is a rift among the separatists regarding collection and use of funds pumped through the ‘hawala’ route, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has claimed.
The NIA claimed in a press statement that Alam revealed in his custodial interrogation that “Pakistan-based agents route the funds through ‘hawala’ operators which were transferred to the separatist leaders, including Syed Ali Shah Gilani, Chairman, All Parties Hurriyat Conference. Masarat Alam also revealed that there are rifts in the Hurriyat Conference regarding collection and use of funds.”
The agency said these revelations were in continuation of a terror funding probe in a case registered by the agency in 2017.
NIA arrested Yasin Malik, leader of proscribed organisation Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front, Asiya Andrabi, leader of proscribed organisation Duktaran-e-Milat, Separatist leader Shabir Shah of the Jammu Kashmir Democratic Freedom Party (JKDFP) and Masrat Alam of the Muslim League earlier this month. All the four accused were taken into police custody for interrogation. They were already behind bars in other cases registered against them by the NIA and the Enforcement Directorate.
According to the NIA, Malik also confessed that the Joint Resistance Leadership and the Gilani faction of the Hurriyat Conference “collected funds from the business community as well as certain other sources and ensured that economic shut down and violent protests continue to disrupt the daily life of common citizens in the Kashmir Valley in 2016”.
After Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani was killed in an encounter in July 2016, there was wide unrest in the Valley.