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Meet Irfan Mehraj, Editor of ‘Two Circles’, the first to be arrested by NIA in a terror funding case and how left-liberals are painting him as victim

Although 'Two Circles.Net' has tried to pass off the accused as a 'contributor', its founder Kashif-ul-Huda was seen referring to Irfan Mehraj as a 'Editor' in one of his tweets.

On March 20 this year, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested ‘journalist’ Irfan Mehraj in connection with a ‘terror funding case’, which was registered in October 2020.

In a statement, the central agency stated that Mehraj was a close associate of ‘activist’ Khurram Parvez and a member of the Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Societies (JKCCS).

“Investigation revealed that the JKCCS was funding terror activities in the valley and had also been in (the) propagation of secessionist agenda in the Valley under the garb of protection of human rights,” NIA informed.

It further added that several registered and unregistered NGOs and Trusts operating in Jammu and Kashmir have developed links with terror outfits such as Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Taiba.

Soon after his employer ‘Two Circles.Net’ tried to distance itself from the accused by dubbing Irfan Mehraj as a mere contributor to the non-profit propaganda portal (although he worked as an Editor).

In a statement, it said, “TCN has learned that one of our editorial contributors Mr. Irfan Mehraj has been arrested…Since 2020, Irfan has worked as an independent contractor with TCN assuming editorial and writing responsibilities for our English section.”

Two Circles.Net further claimed, “Although the alleged activity of Mr. Mehraj is from a period before his association with TCN, we are concerned about the seriousness of the charges and are monitoring the situation.”

As per the LinkedIn profile of Irfan Mehraj, he started working as the Editor of TCN in April 2020. And the case in question was registered in October of that year. It implied his involvement in the case was during his tenure at the propaganda portal.

Moreover, ‘Two Circles.Net’ was privy to the fact that the accused was working as a ‘researcher’ with the dubious outfit, Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Societies (JKCCS) since 2016. In a detailed research by D-Intent Data, an online research group, it was found that Mehraj worked at TCN and JKCCS at same time for a few months. His association with both the organisations overlapped for a few months in 2020.

In a Facebook post from June 2020, Irfan Mehraj was seen in awe of controversial activist Khurram Parvez. “You keep inspiring us every day,” he wrote.

Although ‘Two Circles.Net’ has tried to pass off the accused as a ‘contributor’, its founder Kashif-ul-Huda was seen referring to Irfan Mehraj as a ‘Editor’ in one of his tweets.

Interestingly, Kashif had expressed his displeasure over the recent verdict of the Supreme Court, which held that mere membership of an unlawful organisation is enough to constitute an offence under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

Presumably, this is why ‘Two Circles. Net’ is now trying to distance itself from Irfan Mehraj. However, this did not stop the usual suspects from painting the accused ‘journalist’ as a victim on social media.

Financial fraud accused Washington Post columnist Rana Ayyub shared an Instagram post of ‘Maktoob media’, decrying the arrest of Irfan Mehraj, and wrote, “The tyranny.”

Maktoob Media is a dubious website which is often found spreading fake news about ‘hate crimes’ on Muslims in India, in a bid to what appears to be creating a wedge amongst Indians. The page is regularly promoted by terror apologists. Interesting, Maktoob Media Facebook page started out as a fanpage of former Congress IT head Divya Spandana.

Suchitra Vijayan, the founder of the George Soros-funded-Polis Project, claimed, “Kashmiri journalist IrfanMeraj was arrested by the National Investigation Agency under draconian UAPA in Srinagar today. He has been moved to Delhi. Irfan is a reporter and the founding editor of Wande Magazine.”

Former CM of Jammu and Kashmir, Mehbooba Mufti, tweeted, “While conmen are given a free run in Kashmir, journalists like Irfan Mehraj are arrested for doing their duty by speaking the truth. Draconian laws like UAPA are abused constantly to ensure that the process itself becomes the punishment.”

The Editor of the ‘Kashmiriyat’, Qazi Shibil, wrote, “Lest we forget: Irfan Mehraj, another Kashmiri journalist was arrested today from his residence in Srinagar. He is the latest addition to Kashmiri journalists to be jailed. Three are currently jailed under PSA: Fahad Shah: 411 days Asif Sultan: 1668 days Sajad Gul: 436 days.”

As expected, the Press Club of India, Editors Guild of India, Amnesty and Al Jazeera left no stone unturned to defend terror accused Irfan Mehraj and dub his arrest under UAPA as attack on press freedom in India.

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Dibakar Dutta
Dibakar Duttahttps://dibakardutta.in/
Centre-Right. Political analyst. Assistant Editor @Opindia. Reach me at [email protected]

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