Beginning of the end: How an iron fist policy put Yasin Malik on the mat
New Delhi, Apr 13: It comes as both a surprise and shock, when former Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Mehbooba Mufti condemned the arrest of Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief, Yasin Malik. Incidentally he is the same man who has been accused of abducting her sister.
Malik was arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in connection with a terror funding case. Malik has without a doubt been one of the most dreaded persons in the Valley and his crimes range from killing of Indian Air Force (IAF) officials, the genocide of Kashmiri pandits, just to name a few.
The action against Malik was a much awaited one and the man is set to face justice after being given a reprieve by successive governments, both in J&K as well as the Centre. Malik was at the centre of terror related activities for a long time in the Valley.
He saw another opportunity in the genocide of Kashmiri pandits and led several movements on the issue. Malik got away with nearly everything. The government was silent when terrorists had issued threats against the Pandits in newspapers. The government remained silent when rapes and murders of Pandits took place.
Amidst this, he also continued to receive huge chunks of money from various sources in Pakistan through hawala. Cases dating back to the 1990s were not probed properly. Malik also played his cards well and one day declared that he was shunning violence and would follow the Gandhian path to carry forward his movement. Even as he made this statement, he continued to support stone pelters and instigate the youth against the Armed Forces.
The beginning of the end:
A 30 year old case continued to lie in the cold storage. The case related to the killing of Rubaiya Saeed, the sister of Mehbooba Mufti. The other case related to the killing of four IAF personnel in Kashmir.
Yasin Malik and ten others were chargesheeted by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) under the Terrorist and Disruptive Act. The CBI named Yasin Malik as the main accused in both these cases.
The CBI moved the Jammu and Kashmir high court seeking vacation of the stay and also shifting of the proceedings to Jammu. In 2009, the Srinagar bench had granted an interim stay of the trial before the special anti-terror court.
The HC held that the Srinagar bench had no jurisdiction to decide a case that is being tried in a Jammu special court. Justice Gita Mittal further held that the petitions filed by Malik and others at the Srinagar wing could not have been taken up for consideration. The hearing has to be sent to the Jammu wing for consideration, the court further held. The court also noted that only the Jammu wing of the HC was authorised to hear and decide a plea against the TADA court.
Crimes of 1995 come back to haunt Malik:
Last week, the NIA arrested Malik in connection with the terror funding case. Malik has been investigated several times in the past for his role in channelising funds to create unrest and aid terror related activities in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
NIA sources say that the funding has gone both to terrorist groups and separatists as well. Money has been pumped into the Hurriyat Conference, Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front, Islamic Students Front, Hizbul Mujahideen, Jaish-e-Mohammad and Jamiat ul-Mujahideen.
In the case of Syed Ali Shah Geelani an FIR had been registered in the year 1997 in which it was alleged that he had got funding to the tune of Rs 190 million from Saudi Arabia and also another donation of Rs 100 million from the Kashmir American Council.
Investigations had revealed that all these funds were routed through a Delhi based Hawala operative. It was also found that Yasin Malik had received funding of 1 lakh US dollars and the money was being carried by a lady called Shazia. The NIA says that it is probing into all these angles. We are looking at each case since the 1995 onwards and this will help us get a better picture of the entire racket, the officer further added.
In March, the Union Government banned the Malik led JKLF. The outfit banned for alleged promotion of secessionist activities in J&K.
The organisation was banned under various provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.