Tightening its noose around separatist leaders over their involvement in the alleged terror funding case in Jammu and Kashmir, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Tuesday questioned hardline Hurriyat chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s sons, Naeem and Naseem.
NIA officials said that Geelani brothers arrived at the NIA headquarters here around 11 a.m. after evading the counter-terror agency's earlier summons.
The NIA had issued summons to Naeem, a doctor who was once based in Pakistan, on July 27 and August 1. He failed to appear because he was hospitalised in Srinagar.
Geelani's younger son Naseem, who works at an agricultural university in Srinagar, was summoned to appear before NIA on August 2.
He also did not come saying the notice should be served through Vice Chancellor of Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Agriculture Science so that he was permitted to take leave and claim travel allowances.
Investigating into a money trail to expose how Pakistan sent cash to separatists for stoking unrest in the Kashmir Valley, the NIA has arrested eight separatist leaders in connection with its probe into terror funding from Pakistan and militant groups based there.
The arrested separatists include Shabir Shah and Altaf Ahmad Shah, who is Geelani's son-in-law. They have been booked on charges of criminal conspiracy and waging war against India.
Last month, the NIA had arrested Devinder Singh Behl, a member of legal cell of Hurriyat and a "close associate" of Geelani, in the Jammu and Kashmir terror funding case.
During the probe, the investigators had found that he was allegedly in touch with people in the Pakistan high commission in Delhi and may have leaked national secrets, including information about movement of Indian troops, to the ISI.
During the initial investigation, the NIA found that Behl, who is the chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Social Peace Forum (JKSPF), a constituent of Tehreek-e-Hurriayat headed by Geelani, has been publicly raising pro-azaadi slogans and exhorting Kashmiris not to let the “martyrdom” of militants go in vain.
While conducting raids in the office and house of Behl, the NIA recovered a detailed protest calendar issued and signed by Hurriyat hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani, which shed light on the role of separatists in organising events in coordination with handlers in Pakistan that led to widespread violence in Kashmir.
The NIA found documents that list dates and when protests and other activities to create unrest were to be carried out in the Valley fooling the encounter of Hizbul commander Burhan Wani on July 8 last year.