Srinagar: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday conducted raids against banned Jamaat-e-Islami (JeI) members in the Kashmir valley for the second day in connection with a terror funding case, officials said.
NIA sleuths, along with police and the CRPF, carried out searches at five places in Bandipora district of north Kashmir, a day after it carried out raids at 56 locations in all the 10 districts of Kashmir and four districts of Jammu province – Ramban, Kishtwar, Doda and Rajouri.
The raids on the premises of office-bearers of the proscribed association, its members and also the offices of trusts purportedly run by the JeI were conducted more than two years after the socio-political and religious group was banned by the Centre under anti-terror laws.
In February 2019, the Centre banned the JeI for five years under anti-terror laws on grounds that it was “in close touch” with militant outfits and was expected to “escalate secessionist movement” in the erstwhile state.
A notification banning the group under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act was issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs after a high-level meeting on security chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Hundreds of JeI activists were arrested in a major crackdown across Jammu and Kashmir following the ban, which came just months ahead of the abrogation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir, and its bifurcation into two union territories in August 2019.
The NIA said a case was registered on February 5, 2021 in pursuance of an order from the Ministry of Home Affairs relating to separatist and secessionist activities of JeI, an unlawful association under the UA(P) Act, even after its proscription on February 28, 2019.
It said 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 funds raised by JeI are also being channelised to proscribed terrorist organisations such as Hizb-ul-Mujahideen (HM), Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and others through well organised networks of JeI cadres. JeI has also been motivating impressionable youth of Kashmir and recruiting new members (Rukuns) in J&K to participate in disruptive secessionist activities,” an NIA spokesperson said on Sunday.