Hizbul chief’s son arrested by NIA for terror funding

SansadTV Bureau
File photo of terror outfit Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin

File photo of terror outfit Hizbul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin

Syed Shahid Yousuf, son of globally wanted terrorist and chief of terror outfit Hizbul Mujahideen Syed Salahuddin, was arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Tuesday in connection with a 2011 terror funding case for allegedly receiving money from his father.

An NIA spokesman said that 42-year-old Shahid, at present working in the Jammu and Kashmir government’s agricultural department, was summoned to the headquarters today after which he was placed under arrest.

The NIA alleged that Shahid used to receive funds through international wire money transfer from Aijaz Ahmed Bhat, an absconding accused, at present based in Saudi Arabia.

The agency alleged that Shahid is “one of several Indian contacts of Bhat” who have been in telephonic contact with him to receive the money transfer codes.

The case, registered by the NIA in April 2011, relates to transfer of money from Pakistan to Jammu and Kashmir through Hawala channels via Delhi which was suspected to be used in funding terrorism and secessionist activities.

The NIA has so far filed two charge sheets against six people which included GM Bhat, a close aide of pro-Pakistan separatist Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mohammed Siddiq Ganai, Ghulam Jeelani Liloo and Farooq Ahmed Dagga. All the four were in judicial custody.

Besides them, two others — Mohammed Maqbool Pandit and Aijaz Ahmed Bhat — have also been chargesheeted by the NIA but both of them were absconding. An Interpol Red Corner notice has been issued against both.

Shahid’s father Mohammed Yusuf Shah — better known as Syed Salahuddin — was declared a Specially Designated Global Terrorist by the US Department of State in June this year. Besides heading Hizbul, he is also the chairman of United Jehad Council (UJC), a conglomerate of various terrorist outfits operating in the Kashmir Valley.

The NIA has also registered two others cases related to terror funding — one in November 2011 and another in May this year. The agency has already filed a charge sheet against 10 people which included Syed Salahuddin in the second case of 2011.

In the recent case, the NIA has arrested 10 people including some close kin and aides of Geelani.

(With inputs from PTI)