Continuing its search operations in Kashmir for the second consecutive day, the NIA on Thursday conducted raids at seven locations in Kashmir, and two in New Delhi.
According to the agency, the search operations were carried out in connection with a case of funds being raised from “India and abroad in the name of charitable activities” and allegedly used for “secessionist and separatist activities in J&K”.
On Wednesday, NIA had raided at least 10 locations, including residences of human rights activists, journalists and offices of NGOs.
“In continuation of yesterday’s search operations, NIA conducted searches at 7 locations in Srinagar, Baramulla, Anantnag & Kulgam (J&K) and 2 locations in Delhi in connection with the case pertaining to certain NGOs and Trusts raising funds in the name of charitable activities and then using those funds for carrying out secessionist and separatist activities in J&K,” NIA said in a release. The case, it stated, was registered on October 8 this year under different Sections of IPC and Section 40 of UAPA “as per directions of MHA on receipt of credible information that certain NGOs and Trusts are collecting funds domestically and abroad through donations and business contributions etc, in the name of various welfare activities…”
The NIA stated that “these funds are sent to J&K through various channels such as hawala and cash couriers and are used to carry out and sustain secessionist and terrorist activities in J&K”.
The organisations raided on Thursday include the Falah-e-Aam Trust (FAT). Set up in 1972, FAT is the largest private educational society in J&K and runs 350 middle and high schools in the Union Territory – 300 in Kashmir Valley and 50 in Jammu region. Close to 10,000 children study in these schools, according to the Trust.
Srinagar and Kulgam offices of J&K Yateem Foundation (JKYF) were also raided. Established in 2000, it is one of the largest charity organisations in the Valley, and helps the poor and the destitute; runs an orphanage, a diagnostic centre and a school in the Valley.
The NIA also searched the Anantnag and New Delhi offices of Human Welfare Foundation – a Delhi-based NGO working in the healthcare sector, sanitation, and relief and rehabilitation. The NGO said it was involved in relief and rehabilitation of families of the victims of last year’s Delhi riots.
The NIA release said that the office of Charity Alliance, run by Zafar-ul-Islam, was raided in the national capital.
The office of Voice of Victims – a human rights defender group – in Baramulla and the residence of separatist leader Zafar Akbar Bhat, who heads the J&K Salvation Movement, were also searched.
On Wednesday, the NIA had conducted search operations at the residence of human rights defender Khurram Parvez, senior journalist Parvez Bukhari and offices of Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS), an NGO – ‘Athrout’, and the Greater Kashmir Trust.
The agency said that “several incriminating documents and electronic devices have been seized” during the raids.
Meanwhile, Zafar-ul-Islam, a former Delhi Minorities Commission chairperson, tweeted: “My home and offices were raided by NIA this morning from 7am to 11 am. They took many papers, all laptops, hard disks of all desktops, cash found etc. They showed me an order on their mobile, issued by one Yadav of NIA, to conduct the raid linking me and my NGO with Kashmir terror although I have no relationship or even contacts with Kashmiri militants and have not even visited Kashmir for many years. It seems an attempt to implicate me in some terror or riot case… When I, who was the first in India to denounce ISIS, Al Qaeda and Hizbut Tahrir, am accused of funding terror you can doubt all such claims in India…”
In a statement, Human Welfare Foundation, whose office in Delhi’s Abul Fazal Enclave was searched, said, “More than 15 sleuths (of NIA) conducted raids at the offices…(they) took away some files, documents, and laptops/computers of account department, chief executive officer and public relations department of the Foundation.”
“Treasurer Mohammad Jafar and acting CEO Noufal PK were detained for interrogation,” HFW general secretary T Arif Ali said in the statement.
“The Foundation’s activities are totally transparent and its records are properly audited and submitted to Income Tax Department and Charity Commissioner annually. The Foundation is ready to help NIA and all government agencies in investigation.”
With inputs from ENS, Delhi
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