Delhi Court Allows ED To Quiz Watali

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NEW DELHI — A Delhi Court Wednesday allowed Enforcement Directorate to quiz Kashmiri businessman Zahoor Watali and six others in a funding case filed at the behest of government of India. 

Special Judge Rakesh Syal allowed ED officers to interrogate Watali and others on any two working days from July 10-30.

Special Public Prosecutor Nitesh Rana, appearing for ED, told the court that seven people hatched a criminal conspiracy to carry out subversive and secessionist activities in Jammu and Kashmir and established a network of cadres who were funded through Pakistani agencies via hawala dealers, local conduits by raising funds through local donations and funds have also been received from abroad.

“In view of the aforesaid facts and circumstances, the request of Enforcement Directorate to interrogate and record the statements of Bashir Ahmad Bhat, Aftab Ahmad Shah, Farooq Ahamd Dar, Raja Mehrajuddin Kalwal, Mohd Akbar Khanday, Nayeem Ahmad Khan and Zahoor Ahmad Shah Watali is allowed,” the judge said.

The court said that Arun Kumar, Assistant Director and Rajesh Kumar, Enforcement Officer of ED may interrogate and record statements of the accused who are currently in judicial custody on any two working days for each person between July 10 and July 30 after giving due notice to all concerned. They are allowed to carry case record and necessary stationery for the purpose.

The concerned Jail Superintendent is directed to make necessary arrangement, the court said.

A charge sheet was filed by the NIA in January this year against Hafiz Saeed, Hizbul Mujahideen leader Syed Salahuddin and others for “conspiring to wage war against the government” and fomenting trouble in the Kashmir Valley.

The court had on February 2 taken cognisance of the charge sheet.

The 12,794-page charge sheet also alleged that officials of the Pakistan High Commission here were passing on money through Watali to the separatists.

The separatist leaders have been accused of taking a cut before handing over the money to foment trouble.

Saeed has also been accused of using the services of Watali for passing on the money to the separatists and some individuals who were actively indulging in stone-pelting in various areas of the Valley, the NIA said in the charge sheet.


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