NIA raids senior separatist leaders, aides in Valley

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Thursday raided the house of senior separatist leader and Shia cleric Syed Agha Hassan in Jammu and Kashmir’s Badgam as well as the houses of other separatist leaders and their aides in the Valley as part of the terror funding case probe.

According to NIA sources, similar raids are going on at 12 places in the Valley on Thursday.

Sleuths of NIA started a raid at the residence of Hassan in Badgam district at 4 a.m.

Simultaneous raids were carried out by teams of the anti-terror agency on the houses of Ghulam Nabi Sumji, senior separatist leader of Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s Hurriyat group, Zameer Thakur, a close aide of Shabir Shah, and Showkat Bakshi, another senior leader of the JKLF.

Sources said the NIA sleuths assisted by the police and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) started raids at 12 places in the Valley on Thursday and the raids are likely to continue for the whole day.

On Wednesday, the agency had raided 24 places in the Kashmir Valley and in Delhi focusing mainly on traders, who allegedly have links with the terror funding case presently under probe by the NIA.

Three senior separatist leaders, Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik have announced they would take out a protest march to the NIA headquarters in New Delhi and court arrest on September 9.

The agency had in July arrested seven separatist leaders and a prominent local businessman in connection with the probe into the terror funding by Pakistan-based terrorist groups to stoke unrest in the valley.

President of Kashmir Bar Association Mian Qayoom was questioned by the NIA for nearly seven hours on Wednesday.

Lawyers in the valley have decided to stay away from courts till Qayoom returned from Delhi.

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