NIA Raids Multiple Locations in Kashmir and Poonch
Srinagar: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) searched about a dozen locations across the Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory (UT) concerning a case related to militancy registered last year, official sources said on Tuesday.
An NIA spokesman said the agency conducted these searches at about 12 locations until late evening. Most of these spots were in Kashmir Valley, including eight in Pulwama district and one in Kulgam, Anantnag, and Budgam districts. The agency also searched a location at Pir Panjal Valley’s Poonch district in Jammu.
The spokesman said that a case (RC05/2022/NIA/JMU) related to the hatching of a physical and cyberspace conspiracy and plans by proscribed terrorist organisations to execute violent terrorist attacks in J&K with sticky bombs, Improvised Explosive Devices and small arms.
“The plans are part of a larger conspiracy by the terrorist groups to commit terror acts in association with local youths and Over Ground Workers to create communal disharmony in J&K. The terrorist outfits involved in the conspiracy were identified as Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT), Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM), Hizb-ul-Mujahideen (HM), Al-Badr, and Al-Qaeda,” the official was quoted as saying.
The agency added that searches were also being carried out in the premises of alleged cadres and OGWs linked with the affiliates and offshoots of these organisations, operating under pseudonyms such as The Resistance Front (TRF), United Liberation Front Jammu and Kashmir (ULJK), Mujahideen Gazwat-ul-Hind (MGH), Jammu and Kashmir Freedom Fighters (JKFF), Kashmir Tigers and the PAFF. These offshoots emerged on the militant landscape in the region after the authorities abrogated Articles 370 and 35 A despite vehement local opposition.
The NIA had conducted similar searches in the “terror conspiracy case at 14 locations in J&K on June 24 last year”. The searches, conducted in the districts of Srinagar, Baramulla, Pulwama, Anantnag, Budgam, and Kathua, had led to the seizure of incriminating material and digital devices.
The agency is also investigating reported incidents where suspected Pak-based handlers and commanders of banned militant outfits have been found using drones to push weapons, bombs, and narcotics to the Indian side to arm militants active in Kashmir. Most of these incidents have been reported from the Line of Control (LoC) and International Border (IB) in Jammu, emerging as the primary hotspot for infiltration and smuggling of arms and weapons. There has been a significant increase in militancy-related attacks and incidents in the Jammu division in the past few years, increasing security-related concerns.
This year, two of the deadliest incidents have occurred in Pir Panjal, which resulted in the killing of at least 9 civilians and five security personnel on January 1 and April 20, respectively.
Meanwhile, the State Investigation Agency (SIA) also raided the house of Hurriyat leader and activist Yasmeen Raja in the South Kashmir area of Pampore in Pulwama district.
Raja's residence at Tulbagh village was raided by the police on the directions of the Court of 3rd Additional Judge, Jammu, in connection with a case registered at Police Station Gandhi Nagar last year. Earlier last year, the police arrested a former minister Jitender Singh alias Babu Singh in Jammu for an alleged “Hawala” money case. Raja headed a women-centric separatist organisation called the Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Khawateen Markaz (MKM), which has remained one of the critical constituents of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) amalgam.
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