The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday issued summons to Kashmiri separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s younger son Naseem Geelani for questioning in its ongoing probe in Jammu and Kashmir terror funding case.
Sources said that the central anti-terror agency asked Naseem Geelani to appear before it at its headquarters on Wednesday and also reissued summons to his elder brother Naeem Geelani, a doctor who was once based in Pakistan, as he failed to appear in response to the NIA’s earlier notice calling him on Monday.
“NIA has issued summons to Geelani’s younger son Naseem and reissued summons to his elder son Naeem who is admitted to hospital in Srinagar because of sudden ailment and did not appear before us today (Monday),” said sources.
Earlier in the day, the NIA also raided the ancestral home of Jammu and Kashmir advocate Devender Singh Behal, in Nowshera town of the state’s Rajouri district, a day after arresting him over suspected involvement in the funding case.
As part of its crackdown on Kashmiri separatist leaders for their alleged involvement in funding terrorist activities, the NIA on Sunday raided Behal’s home in Jammu’s Bakshi Nagar and took him into custody. Four mobile phones, a tablet, electronic devices and financial documents were also seized.
NIA sources said Behal, who is considered close to Geelani and is regularly seen at funerals of slain militants, was being questioned for his role in the funding.
Behal heads the Jammu and Kashmir Social Peace Forum (JKSPF), a constituent of the hardline faction of the Hurriyat Conference led by Geelani and is also a member of its legal cell.
According to the agency, it was investigating Behal’s role “as a courier as he is suspected to be involved in routing funds to the separatist leaders from Pakistan-based handlers”.
The agency also has recovered a detailed protest calendar signed by Geelani that marks the role of separatists in organising events that are coordinated by Pakistani handlers to spread violence in the Kashmir Valley.
The NIA has recovered documents from Altaf Ahmad Shah ‘Funtoosh’, Geelani’s son-in-law, that list dates of protests and other uncivil activities to be carried out in Kashmir after the July 8, 2016 killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani.
The calendar established systematic and planned violence that caused several deaths and injuries in the clashes between stone-pelters and security forces, an NIA official said.
NIA’s investigation indicates that local clerics and separatist cadres along with the opposition parties who were funded by Pakistani agencies were involved in the radical activities.
One of the incidents listed was on August 6, 2016, when Geelani called for assembling and occupying local chowks and centres in the vicinity of villages and locals and playing of Islamic and ‘azadi taranas’ (“freedom songs”) in mosques.
The calendar was also filled with dates marking activities in August 2016 when Jammu and Kashmir were marred by protests and stone pelting following the death of Wani.