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NIA: Kashmir teacher, who helped Bengal woman get in touch with Lashkar, arrested

A school teacher, who was a recruiter for Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba, was arrested from his residence in north Kashmir, India’s National Investigation Agency said.

Altaf Ahmad Rather, a resident of Jammu and Kashmir’s Bandipora district, was wanted in a case registered in West Bengal last year following the arrest of a woman, Tania Parveen, for her association with Lashkar, a spokesman of the NIA said.

“Investigation has revealed that Rather is a school teacher in Bandipora and was a sympathiser of the LeT. Parveen had come in contact with him over social media platforms and he was instrumental in introducing her to LeT members based in Pakistan, in pursuance of a conspiracy to radicalise, motivate and recruit youths for violent ‘Jihad’ (holy war) on India,” he claimed.

The spokesman said Parveen was arrested by the West Bengal Police last year for her association with the LeT.

An FIR was registered against her at the Badurai police station in West Bengal’s North 24 Parganas district under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and and the Information Technology Act, he said.

The NIA had re-registered the case on April 5, 2020, and taken over the investigation in it from the state’s police. The agency has already filed a charge-sheet against her, the spokesman said.

“Further investigation in the case continues,” he said.

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