NIA crackdown on banned Jamaat-e-Islami in J&K

NIA crackdown on banned Jamaat-e-Islami in J&K

The NIA investigation has also revealed that the funds raised by the JeI are being channelised to proscribed militant organisations

Representative Image. Credit: PTI Photo

In a major crackdown, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Sunday conducted raids on banned Jamaat-e-Islami (JeI) at dozens of locations across Jammu and Kashmir in connection with a terror funding probe.

Reports said the premier probe agency sleuths accompanied by police and CRPF personnel, raided houses of senior members of the banned organisation besides offices of Falah-e-Aam Trust (FAT), which runs a chain of schools across the union territory (UT) under the auspices of the JeI.

A spokesperson of the NIA said raids were conducted at 56 locations in districts of Srinagar, Budgam, Ganderbal, Baramulla, Kupwara, Bandipora, Anantnag, Shopian, Pulwama, Kulgam (in Kashmir) and Ramban, Doda, Kishtwar and Rajouri in Jammu in case number RC-03/2021/NIA/DLI.

“The case was registered by NIA on 05.02.2021 in pursuance to order from Ministry of Home Affairs relating to separatist and secessionist activities of the JeI, an unlawful association under the UA (P) Act, even after its proscription on 28.02.2019,” he said.

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“The members of the organisation have been collecting funds domestically and abroad through donations particularly in the form of Zakat, Mowda and Bait-ul-Mal purportedly to further charity and other welfare activities  but these funds are instead being used for violent and secessionist activities,” the statement added.

The NIA investigation has also revealed that the funds raised by the JeI are being channelised to proscribed militant organisations such as Hizbul Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Taiba and others through well organised networks of its cadres. “JeI has also been motivating impressionable youth of Kashmir and recruiting new members ( Rukuns) in J&K to participate in disruptive secessionist activities,” it added.

A senior deputy inspector general (DIG) rank officer and a team from New Delhi had flown to Srinagar before the raids.

In 2019, the Centre had banned the JeI for five years after the Pulwama terror attack, in which 40 paramilitary CRPF personnel were killed and which brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war.

Over 100 JeI members, including its chief Abdul Hameed Fayaz were arrested by the police at that time. Fayaz continues to be behind bars.

According to media reports the FAT runs hundreds of schools across the UT and these institutions are better than the government schools in infrastructure and the quality of teaching. These JeI run schools combine modern scientific education and Islamic teachings.

A senior police officer said that right from 1990 the JeI functioned as a socio-political wing of Hizbul Mujahideen militant outfit. “Its (JeI) cadres function as over ground workers of the Hizbul in providing infrastructure/logistic support and organising protective shells in which militants operate,” he said.

The officer added that the JeI has substantial penetration even in the UT’s lower and middle-level civil administration, civil secretariat, colleges and universities, legal fraternity, powerful financial institutions, political groups, and the police department. “To break this nexus, the Center has taken various steps and the latest NIA crackdown is one step in that direction,” he claimed.