The National Investigative Agency (NIA) has been thoroughly focused on the terror funding in Kashmir for some months now.
At the start of June, the NIA had raided as many as 23 locations across Delhi, Haryana and Kashmir in connection with the Pakistani funding which the Kashmiri separatist leaders are believed to receive in order to spread terror in the valley. This had been followed by the questioning and detention of Geelani’s son-in-law, Altaf Fantosh. Later it was also revealed that the NIA was investigating journalists and retired judges in connection with fuelling the Kashmir unrest. The NIA had then even arrested 7 separatist leaders including the dreaded Bitta Karate.
Now according to reports the NIA has again gone on the offensive in its terror funding probe. Reports claimed that the NIA had identified 117 individuals who led stone pelting groups and gave instructions over WhatsApp. The NIA has also as a result identified 79 WhatsApp groups, many of which have admins in Pakistan. Some of the WhatsApp groups were named valley of tears, Pulwama rebels, FrEEdom FigHtErz (sic), Tehreek E Azaadi123. A total of 6,386 phone numbers were part of these groups out of which about a 1000 were active from Pakistan and Gulf countries.
The NIA has also reportedly arrested two notorious stone pelters on Tuesday one of whom is a photojournalist. The pelters have been identified as Javed Ahmad Bhat and Kamran Yousuf. Kamran reportedly used to contribute photographs to various local newspapers based in Kashmir. Both these pelters were also reportedly very active on social media and used to instigate youths to pelt stones on the security forces.
Apart from them, Mian Abdul Qayoom a senior lawyer and Kashmir Bar Association chief has also been summoned to the NIA headquarters in Delhi. He is considered close to separatist leaders including Syed Ali Shah Geelani.
The NIA on Wednesday also raided a total of 16 locations in connection with its probe. 11 of these locations were in Srinagar and the rest are are in Delhi. The raids reportedly took place on establishments owned by traders and the teams carried out extensive search operations at the suspected locations.