NIA court convicts Yasin Malik in terrorism financing case

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The area was cordoned off by security and journalists were asked to wait outside the court during the hearing.

Yasin Malik has been charged with instigating a criminal conspiracy, waging war against the country, other illegal activities and disturbing the peace in Kashmir.

He had pleaded guilty in this case. At the last court date, he told the court that he did not contest the charges against him, including Article 16 (terrorist act), 17 (raising funds for the terrorist act), 18 (conspiracy with a view to committing a terrorist act), and 20 (being a member of a gang or a terrorist organization) of the UAPA and articles 120-B (criminal association) and 124-A (sedition) of the Penal Code Indian.

Special Judge Praveen Singh had then set the case for May 19 to hear arguments regarding the quantum of sentence for the offenses against Malik in which the maximum penalty is life imprisonment.

Kashmir separatist leaders including Yasin Malik, Shabbir Shah, Masarat Alam, former MLA engineer Rashid, businessman Zahoor Ahmad Shah Watali, Bitta Karate, Aftab Ahmad Shah, Avatar Ahmad Shah, Naeem Khan, Bashir Ahmed Bhat aka Peer Saifullah and several others have also been charged with criminal conspiracy, war against the country and other illegal activities.

In the order dated March 16, NIA Special Judge Praveen Singh said: “The above analysis shows that witness statements and documentary evidence linked nearly all of the defendants to each other and to a common object of secession, to the commonality of means they were to use, their close association with terrorist/terrorist organizations under the leadership and funding of the Pakistani establishment.

In particular, the court acquitted three of them, namely Kamran Yusuf, Javed Ahmad Bhatt and Syedah Aasiya Firdous Andrabi.

The case is linked to the various terrorist formations Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Hizbul-Mujahideen (HM), Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) supported by the Islamic State who commit terrorism and secessionist activities aimed at disrupting Jammu and Kashmir.

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