Terror funding: Court takes cognizance of charge sheet against Hafiz Saeed, others
A special court here on Friday took cognizance of the NIA charge sheet against LeT chief and 26/11 Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed, Hizbul Mujahideen head Syed Salahuddin and others in the terror funding case.
They have been accused by the NIA of "conspiring to wage war against the government" and fomenting trouble in the Kashmir Valley.
Additional Sessions Judge Tarun Sherawat directed the anti- terror probe agency to hand over copies to the accused persons, and posted the matter for March 8 for scrutiny of documents.
It posted for February 15 the bail petition of freelance photo-journalist Kamran Yusuf, arrested last year for alleged stone-pelting and other offences. The NIA has alleged that Yusuf was acting as a conduit for those funding terrorist activities in Jammu and Kashmir.
The 12,794-page charge sheet and annexure, also alleged that officials of the Pakistan high commission here were passing on money through businessman Zahoor Watali, who has been arrested, to separatists. The separatist leaders have been accused of taking a cut before handing over the money to foment trouble.
Saeed has been accused of using the services of Watali for passing on the money to separatists and some individuals who were actively indulging in stone-pelting in various areas of the Valley, the NIA said in the charge sheet.
The agency has charged Pakistan-based terrorists Saeed and Salahuddin, besides 10 others with criminal conspiracy, sedition, and under stringent provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
It said 60 locations were raided and 950 incriminating documents seized. There are 300 witnesses in the case.
Besides Saeed, Salahuddin, Watali and Yusuf, the agency has also named hardline pro-Pakistan separatist Syed Ali Shah Geelani's son-in-law Altaf Shah alias Altaf Fantoosh, Bashir Ahmad Bhat and Javed Ahmad Bhat, who was identified along with Yusuf as a stone-pelter.
Hurriyat Conference leaders Nayeem Ahmad Khan, Farooq Ahmad Dar alias Bitta Karate, Mohammad Akbar Khanday and Raja Mehrajuddin Kalwal have also been charged by the agency in the terror funding case.
All the 10 arrested accused are currently in judicial custody.
The agency has charged the Hurriyat leaders with acting under the overall guidance of and instructions from Saeed and Salahuddin, and their "Pakistani handlers". They have been accuse of plotting strategies to launch violent protests.
Saeed, Salahuddin and their Pakistani handlers informed people about the agenda of violence through "protest calendars", the NIA said. These calendars were released through newspapers, social media and religious leaders, it said.
These acts were aimed at creating an atmosphere of terror and fear in Jammu and Kashmir, the NIA alleged in the charge sheet.
It claimed money was also routed through fake and bogus companies floated abroad and remitted to the Hurriyat leaders in Jammu and Kashmir.