Terror funding: Is it time to do away with Haj subsidy?
The Kashmir terror funding case has not only netted several important persons, but has also unearthed the several methods used to finance terror and the unrest. While cross border trade was one major route to raise funds, the other was through the diversion of Haj subsidy.
It has become a racket, an NIA official said. Huge sums of money was raised through this racket and we are in the process of questioning several travel agents in this regard, the officer said.
Investigations have found that the the diversion of subsidy played a major role in the terror funding. In some quarters it is being discussed that since the misuse is so high, it is better to do away with it all together.
The agents would take around Rs 2 lakh from the pilgrims and pocket Rs 1.5 lakh. A part of this money would be diverted to accounts of Hurriyat members who would in turn use the same fund terror and also the unrest in the Kashmir valley. The agents who would charge the pilgrims a high amount would in turn use the Haj subsidy to purchase tickets. Tickets under subsidy are available for Rs 50,000.
NIA officials say that they have collected the statements of several persons following which this channel of funding was discovered. The Hurriyat members who we have been questioning have also revealed details of this channel of funding the NIA official told OneIndia.
In addition this, investigators have stumbled upon crucial evidence regarding terror funding along the Line of Control through the sale of dry fruits and food products. The modus operandi adopted by terror groups in selling products at a higher cost and using the profits to fund subversive activities in India was discovered by the National Investigation Agency.
It was found that cross border traders had been tapped by terror groups to help raise funds for terror activities in Jammu and Kashmir. Investigators were stumped to find out that terror funding continued unabated despite the decision on demonetisation wiping out the fake currency network.