NIA gets 10-day custody of journalist Irfan Mehraj in alleged militant-funding case

NEW DELHI — A Delhi court on Wednesday sent Kashmiri journalist Irfan Mehraj, to the National Investigation Agency’s (NIA) custody for 10 days in an alleged NGO militant-funding case registered under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), The New Indian Express reported.

The freelance journalist, who has contributed to various national and international news organizations, was arrested by NIA on Monday from Srinagar, and produced before a special NIA judge at Delhi’s Patiala House court, the report said.

The NIA sought 12 days of custody of the journalist in order to interrogate him in alleged NGO militant-funding case registered in October 2020.

Mehraj’s arrest was following comprehensive investigations into the NGO militant-funding case registered in October 2020, NIA Spokesman said according to the report.

Irfan was a close associate of detained Khurram Parvez and was working with his organization, Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Societies (JKCCS). Investigation revealed that the JKCCS was funding militant activities in the valley and had also been in the propagation of a secessionist agenda in the Valley under the garb of protection of human rights, he said.

Khurram Parvez, human rights activist and chairman of the Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances and coordinator of JKCCS was arrested by NIA in November 2021.

The involvement of some Valley-based NGOs, Trusts and Societies in the militant-funding related activities are being probed in this case. Some NGOs, both registered as well as unregistered, have come to notice collecting funds domestically and abroad under the cover of doing charity and various welfare activities, including Public Health, Education etc. But some of these organisations have developed links with proscribed terrorist organizations, such as LeT, Hizbul Mujahideen, the NIA spokesman said.