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Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Mehbooba Mufti once spoke to Hizbul militant Naveed Babu: Indian probe agency claims

Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti knew arrested Hizbul Mujahideen militant Naveed Babu and had also spoken to him once, India’s National Investigation Agency claimed in a charge-sheet filed in connection with the case related to arrested former J&K DSP Davinder Singh.

This is for the first time that name of Mufti has come up in any of the cases being probed by the NIA in Jammu and Kashmir.

An IANS report said, “The name of the former Chief Minister has emerged in the case related to arrested DSP Davinder Singh and HM militant Naveed Babu.”

The NIA has filed a supplementary charge-sheet against three persons, including arrested Peoples Democratic Party youth wing chief Waheed-ur-Rehman Parra, who allegedly worked as a financier for Hizbul Mujahideen in connection with the case.

The official said that Mufti knew Hizbul militant Naveed Babu and had even spoken to him once. However, the official refused to share more details.

The NIA in its supplementary charge-sheet has claimed that Parra was part of the “conspiracy” to raise and transfer militancy funds to Hizbul Mujahideen militants for the procurement of terrorist hardware and was also a crucial player in sustaining the political-separatist-militant nexus in J&K.

Parra was instrumental in the revival of the PDP in south Kashmir, especially in the militancy-affected Pulwama district.

Besides Parra, the NIA has also named two gun runners — Shaheen Ahmad Lone and Tafazul Hussain Parimoo — in connection with the case.

Suspended police officer Singh is currently lodged in Kathua jail at Hiranagar in the Jammu division. He was arrested by the police on January 11 last year from the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway while transporting two Hizbul militants — Naveed Babu and Rafi Ahmad Rather — and a law school dropout, Irfan Shafi Mir, to Jammu.

After the arrest of Singh, initial investigations were done by the J&K Police before the case was handed over to the NIA. The police had said that the two militants and the lawyer had planned to travel to Pakistan.

The NIA had earlier claimed that its probe has revealed that the accused were part of a deep-rooted conspiracy hatched by the Hizbul and Pakistan to commit violent acts and wage war against India.

Mufti had recently skipped an Enforcement Directorate (ED) summon for questioning in connection with a money-laundering probe.

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