Policeman among two arrested in militant-funding case in Jammu

JAMMU — The Special Investigation Agency (SIA) has arrested two more persons, including a policeman, for allegedly being part of a cross-border narcotic syndicate involved in militant funding here, officials said on Wednesday.

The arrest of Selection grade constable Saif-ud-din of Jammu and former sarpanch Farooq Ahmad Jungal of Uri in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district took the number of accused in the case to 17, they said.

They said the syndicate was unearthed by SIA following investigation in a hawala case involving former minister and chairman of Nature-Mankind Friendly Party Jatinder Singh alias “Babu Singh”.

Singh was arrested in April 2022 after one of his worker’s Mohammad Shareef Shah, a resident of south Kashmir’s Kokernag, was held along with hawala money of Rs 6.90 lakh in Jammu.

The SIA had already filed a charge sheet against 12 accused, including the former minister in the instant case. While nine accused are lodged in Central jail, three absconders are in Pakistan.

A team of SIA raided the house of the policeman in the Belicharana area here on Tuesday and seized some electronic gadgets, the officials said, adding further investigation is in progress to dismantle the ecosystem of narcotics supplies to fund anti-national activities.

Earlier also, the officials said the policeman was booked under Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act when he was arrested with 200 grams of heroin from Shahpur Kandi area of Pathankot.

The role of the policeman and the former sarpanch came to light following the arrest of key accused Mohd Sharief Chechi, also a resident of Uri, in September last year.

After taking over the investigation of the case, the official said SIA unearthed the modus operandi adopted by the accused, including Chechi who used to collect narcotics from across the Line of Control to generate proceeds for militant funding.

The case was initially registered at Police Station Gandhi Nagar in Jammu following arrest of Shah on specific information that he along with the former minister were working under the directions of Pakistan’s ISI and their agents to fund Jammu-based separatists to carry out subversive activities, the officials said. — (PTI)