The National Investigation Agency (NIA) is continuing its nation-wide search operation for the second day today. The raids today, October 29 are being conducted at nine locations, two in Delhi, the rest in Srinagar.
In Delhi the property of former Delhi Minority Commission chief Zafarul-Islam Khan is being raided by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), in a terror funding case it is probing reported NDTV. Khan is the founding editor of the newspaper Milli Gazette and chairman of Charity Alliance, one of the six non-profits that are under the NIA scanner now. The NGOs raided by the NIA are Falah-e-Aam Trust, Charity Alliance, Human Welfare Foundation, JK Yateem Foundation, Salvation Movement, and J&K Voice of Victims. The Charity Alliance and Human Welfare Foundation are based in Delhi, while the rest are based in Jammu and Kashmir’s Srinagar, stated the news report.
Yesterday, October 28, the NIA team conducted raids at multiple places, including properties belonging to human rights defenders, NGOs, and even a media house in Srinagar, in connection with a ‘terror funding’ probe. The NIA raided the office of popular daily Greater Kashmir, as well as the home of well known human rights activist Khurram Parvez, coordinator J&K Coalition of civil society, and journalist Parvez Bukhari. The NIA had also raided a location in Bangalore, Karnataka.
According to news reports the NIA suspects that some non-profits are “raising funds in India and abroad for carrying out separatist activity in Jammu and Kashmir.” The NDTV report states that according to its sources, “several incriminating documents and electronic devices have been seized.” Though the NIA has not made public any details as the investigation is still on. The NIA teams have not shared any details after yesterday’s raids it conducted at the homes and offices of Khurram Parvez, coordinator of J&K Coalition of Civil Society; his associates Parvez Ahmad Bukhari, Parveena Ahanger, chairperson of Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons, NGO Athrout, and the Greater Kailash Trust; Parvez Ahmad Matta and Bengaluru-based associate Swati Sheshadri.
Parveena Ahanger, Chairperson of Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDPK) issued a statement after the raised at the APDP premises. She put on record that the October 28 raid began in the morning and lasted till around 3.30 PM. The raid was conducted by “a team of officers from the NIA, CID and JK Police,” who were accompanied by CRPF officers. She stated that she, and her associates were taken from “home to the APDP office by the team and security personnel” and were present in the office during the raid. “All information and material sought by the raiding team was provided to them. The team examined all documents relating to APDP’s work. They subsequently seized several documents and some electronic devices,” stated Praveena Ahanagar adding her mobile phones were also seized.
She has raised concerns over “misuse of sensitive information, including names and addresses of victims present in documents seized from APDP and apprehension of reprisal against victims of human rights violations”.
The APDP stated that it is an organisation of and for family members of victims of enforced disappearances, it has “documented and recorded testimonies of victims and victim- families who have been subjected to human rights violations by security forces in Kashmir. More than 1000 testimonies of enforced disappearances, about 400 testimonies of pellet gun injuries, about 300-400 testimonies of arbitrary detention and torture and some cases of sexual violence have been documented by APDP and have been submitted to various United Nations special procedures, and Human Rights Organisations. As recently as September 2020, almost 40 testimonies of arbitrary detention and torture that took place in 2019-2020 were submitted to the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and the Special Rapporteur on Torture.”
According to the statement, “documents and devices seized by the NIA team contain details of the names, identities and incidents of human rights abuses by security personnel. There is a grave apprehension that the same may be accessed by other agencies, and/or lead to adverse consequences and reprisal against victims and families who have testified and are pursuing justice.”
The APDP states that it “neither receives foriegn funding, nor engages in any illegal activities. The raid conducted by the NIA has no basis, and only exposes the State’s desperation to deter APDP from pursuing justice for hundreds of victims of human rights violations committed by State actors in Kashmir.”
The statement may be read here:
Meanwhile, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president and ex-Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti posted that the PDP office in Srinagar was sealed by J&K admin, and “workers arrested for organising a peaceful protest… Is this your definition of ‘normalcy’ that’s being showcased in the world?”
PDP office in Srinagar sealed by J&K admin & workers arrested for organising a peaceful protest. A similar protest was allowed in Jammu so why was it thwarted here? Is this your definition of ‘normalcy’ thats being showcased in the world? @PMOIndia @HMOIndia @manojsinha_ pic.twitter.com/j9Y5L5WTyQ
— Mehbooba Mufti (@MehboobaMufti) October 29, 2020
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