Funding Case: NIA takes custody of Masarat, Shah, Aasiya

The National Investigating Agency on Tuesday took custody of Masarat Alam Bhat, along with Shabir Shah, chief of the Jammu and Kashmir Democratic Freedom Party and Aasiya Andrabi, the head of Dukhtaren-e-Millat, to question them about their role in the alleged militant funding case.

The NIA brought Bhat, chairman of the Jammu and Kashmir Muslim League, to Delhi on Monday night from a prison in J&K where he was lodged under the Public Safety Act (PSA).

On Tuesday, he was produced before Additional Sessions Judge Rakesh Syal who sent him to 10-day custody of the NIA.

Bhat was under detention for his role in triggering protests and serial stone pelting in Kashmir in 2010 for several months in which 110 protesters were killed.

Along with Bhat, the court also remanded Shah and Andrabi to NIA custody till June 14 in connection with an alleged militant funding case.

Their custody was sought for interrogation in connection with the funding case which the agency registered in May 2017.

Prior to this, the NIA had brought JKLF leader Yasin Malik here in connection with the case.

In the preceding months, the NIA had arrested separatist leaders including Aftab Hilali Shah alias Shahid-ul-Islam, Ayaz Akbar Khandey, Farooq Ahmad Dar alias Bitta Karate, Nayeem Khan, Altaf Ahmad Shah, Raja Mehrajuddin Kalwal and Bashir Ahmad Bhat alias Peer Saifullah.

Altaf Ahmad Shah is the son-in-law of Hurriyat Conference (G) chairman,  Syed Ali Geelani.. Kashmiri businessman Zahoor Ahmad Shah Watali was arrested in August 2017.

The NIA had on January 18, 2018 filed a chargesheet against 12 persons including Lashkar-e-Taiba founder Hafiz Saeed and Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin in connection with the militant funding case. (PTI)