The Narendra Modi government has “clarity, consistency and conviction” in its approach towards the issues of Jammu and Kashmir, Union minister Jitendra Singh said on Sunday. This was “clear” from the action taken against the son-in-law of hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani and six others by the NIA in connection with its probe into funding of terror and subversive activities in Kashmir Valley, he said in Udhampur. “It is now for the people (of Jammu and Kashmir and India) to judge that how the governments in the past (at the Centre and in the state) had been acting (in such cases),” Singh told reporters.
Singh, who was on a day-long visit to Udhampur, was asked about his reaction to a large number of cases pending without investigation for the past three decades against Geelani.
The minister said, “What difference it has made in the last two to three years is that we have a government (at the Centre) which is following (the policy) of clarity, consistency and conviction in Jammu and Kashmir.”
According to reports, Geelani has been named in 56 First Information Reports (FIRs) in various police stations of Kashmir since 1986, of which 49 continue to be under investigation.
“Many cases related to the separatists have been pending for all these years. The current government is trying to work on it,” Singh said.
“The NIA and other such agencies enjoy certain credibility. Instead of questioning, we should trust and give cooperation and expect that they will bring investigation to a logical conclusion,” he said.
Altaf Ahmed Shah, the son-in-law of Geelani, was arrested last month.
Besides him, Geelani’s close aides Ayaz Akbar, who is also spokesman of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat — a hardline separatists organisation, and Peer Saifullah were arrested by the NIA.
The NIA also arrested Shahid-ul-Islam, spokesman of the moderate Hurriyat Conference led by Mirwaiz Umer Farooq.
The others arrested were Mehrajuddin Kalwal and Nayeem Khan (of the Hurriyat’s Geelani faction) and Farooq Ahmed Dar alias ‘Bitta Karate’.