Srinagar: Kashmiri Separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Monday reached Delhi, to appear before the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for interrogation in connection with Jammu and Kashmir terror funding case. So far, the separatist leader has been summoned by the NIA three times.

In the earlier two summons, the separatist leader had cited security reasons as the reason for the inability to honour them and requested the NIA to interrogate him in Srinagar. The third summons served on him has specified that the security concerns of the Mirwaiz would be taken care of by the NIA in Delhi. As assured by the NIA, Mirwaiz was provided security upon his arrival at Delhi airport after he raised the issue for appearing at the agency’s headquarter in the national capital.

The decision to appear before the NIA was taken by the Mirwaiz on Sunday following an executive meeting of the Hurriyat group. Further, it was decided that executive members of the Hurriyat, including Professor Abdul Ghani Bhat, Bilal Gani Lone and Masroor Ansari would accompany the Mirwaiz to the national capital. The Mirwaiz has appealed people to remain calm and peaceful and not react adversely to his being summoned to Delhi.

Hurriyat Conference leaders namely Abdul Gani Bhat, Bilal Lone and Maulana Abbas Ansari accompanied him. In 2004, the same group of leaders had met then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and then home minister L K Advani for finding a lasting solution to the Kashmir issue. The NIA probe seeks to identify the chain of players behind the financing of terror activities, pelting of stones on security forces, burning down of schools and damaging of government establishments.

Last year, in the month of November, the NIA Special Court of Patiala House in New Delhi issued Non-Bailable Warrants (NBWs) against the founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) Hafiz Muhammad Saeed and Hizbul Mujahideen chief Mohd Yusuf Shah Salahuddin in the terror funding case.

The two accused had allegedly mobilised Pakistan-trained terrorists to wage war against India through the secessionist and separatist leaders in the country. The nefarious plan was to secede Jammu and Kashmir from the Union of India. Earlier on January 18, 2018, the NIA had filed a 12,794-page chargesheet against 12 people in the terror funding case which includes Saeed and Salahuddin.

(With agency inputs)