FUNDING CASE|Security agencies to attach several properties in J&K

At least 10 properties of a Jammu and Kashmir-based businessman, an Islamabad house of HizbulMujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin and a host of immovable assets of separatists have been identified by security agencies for attachment in multiple militancy financing cases, officials said Monday.

The 10 properties of Zahoor Ahmad Shah Watali, currently in Delhi’s Tihar jail in a militancy funding case probed by the NIA, and Salahuddin’s house in a prime location in the Pakistan’s capital city are under the scanner of the agencies.

The federal probe agencies like the Enforcement Directorate, the National Investigation Agency and the Income Tax Department will soon initiate steps for attaching them under various criminal laws by approaching the international bodies concerned, a security official said.

Watali’s properties include a single storyed house at Chhanpora in Srinagar, land at Trison City, Narbal in Srinagar, a single storyed house at Handwara, eight kanal land at Nagrota in Jammu and an under construction nursing home in Srinagar district.

The businessman’s Gurgaon house has already been attached by the ED under the PMLA.

Among the other accused whose assets have been identified include one two storyed house of Farooq Ahmad Dar alias Bitta Karate, situated at NaseemBagh in Hazratbal tehsil, and a two storyed house of Mohammad Akbar Khanday on a 2.5 kanal land at Shalteng in Srinagar.

A two storyed house of Raja MehrajuddinKalwal located at Hamza Colony, Kenihama in Srinagar and a two storyed house of Bashir Ahmad Bhat alias Peer Saifullah at Chadoora, Srinagar are also on the list.

The identification of the properties was part of the continuing crackdown on alleged militancy financiers by security agencies over the few months.

Security agencies have already identified 13 people, including HizbulMujahideen founder Syed Salahuddin, Hurriyat leaders and businessmen, who are allegedly providing funds to militants and stone pelters at the behest of Pakistan spy agency ISI.

The Centre has started seizing properties belonging to alleged militancy financers in a big way, officials say.

Funds were provided to the leadership of Kashmir-based militant groups for misguiding, motivating and recruiting local youths to militant ranks, another official said.

Operational activities of militant groups, including attacks on security forces, camps and convoys, are also being financed, the official said, adding money obtained through these channels are being “used by major secessionist formations, especially the Hurriyat Conference”.

These funds are used for maintaining Hurriyat’s top leadership and a massive propaganda machinery to arouse disaffection among the people of Jammu and Kashmir against the Centre, the officials alleged.

“They are also being utilised to spread false information through media contacts, newspapers and social media”.