J&K ex-sarpanch arrested by NIA for ‘terror links’ fought 2014 assembly polls on BJP ticket

J&K ex-sarpanch arrested by NIA for ‘terror links’ fought 2014 assembly polls on BJP ticket

New Delhi: A former sarpanch from Shopian district in Jammu and Kashmir, arrested by the National Investigation Agency in connection with the DSP Davinder Singh case, had contested the 2014 assembly elections from Wanchi, south Kashmir, as a BJP candidate.

According to sources in the NIA, Tariq Ahmed Mir (30) was an “arms conduit”, and was supplying ammunition on a regular basis to Hizbul Mujahiddin and other terror organisations.

Mir’s election affidavit listed his email id as “[email protected]”, and said he is a resident of Shopian. The affidavit also said he has never been charged with any criminal offence and does not have any criminal case registered against him.

Interestingly, though Mir claimed to be a businessman in his affidavit, in the column asking for details of last income tax return and income, he wrote “Nil”.

He also mentioned that he had “Nil” investments, “Nil” loans, “Nil” movable assets, “Nil” cash in hand, no cars or any other vehicles, no jewellery, no land — agricultural or commercial — and no inherited property. He just mentioned one property, where he resides, as being in his father’s name.

In the affidavit, he also mentioned a “loan to bank” of Rs 7 lakh that he took from the Jammu and Kashmir Bank, but showed his liabilities as “Rs 3 lakh”.

“He claims to be a businessman but he has no assets, no cash, no land, no IT returns. He does not even mention what kind of business he runs. It is all very suspicious,” a source in the NIA said

Mir’s Hizbul link

Mir had been on the NIA’s radar for a few months, after his name cropped up during the interrogation of Naveed Mushtaq Shah, the Hizbul militant who was caught travelling with J&K DSP Davinder Singh in a car in January this year. Singh was arrested with Shah and another Hizbul militant, Rafi Ahmed Rather, and lawyer Irfan Shafi on 11 January in Kulgam, while they were on their way to Jammu.

According to a source, the NIA found a link between how Naveed and Mir were in regular touch with each other, and how Davinder Singh played a role in facilitating the arms racket.

The source said the NIA has found “strong links” to suggest that Mir was involved in the Hizbul network.

“He used to smuggle and provide weapons to Hizbul operatives. We have taken him on a remand for six days, and are now probing how he procured the arms, where did he get the money from, who all did he supply the arms to. We suspect that he had been in this business for years,” the source said.

“We will also investigate if Mir was in touch with Davinder Singh and he gave Mir a safe passage to ferry arms consignments from one place to another in exchange for money. We are also checking bank account details of both Mir and Singh to see if they had any direct transactions,” the source added.

Case has gone beyond Davinder Singh

The source said the investigation in this case has gone beyond DSP Davinder Singh’s role.

“Davinder Singh is just one accused in this entire case. Hizbul militants have also been held and we are now looking at their broader network. Singh facilitated their movement in exchange for money, but we need to unearth how these Hizbul militants reached Kashmir, who sent them, what were their larger plans, goals,” the source said.

“We have got some leads from the Hizbul militant we arrested, and we are working on them.”


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