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No Fear No Favour

Geelani Under NIA Lens, Probes Cases Related To 14 Properties Worth 150 Crore

Tightening its noose over separatist in Kashmir, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) breaks open the Hurriyat leader and separatist Syed Ali Shah Geelani over accusations of terror financing in Jammu & Kashmir. The NIA has shortlisted about 14 properties which are allegedly owned by the head of the hardline faction and his family members. According to the officials, the estimated costs of the properties fall between 100-150 crore.

According to the list of properties under NIA’s scanner includes educational institutions, residences and agricultural lands in Kashmir and flats in Delhi allegedly owned by Geelani, his two sons, Naseem and Nayeem, and daughters Anisha, Farhat, Zamshida, and Chamshida. Anisha and Farhat are Geelani’s daughters from his second marriage.

The list also includes a prime seven-acre land which houses one Unique Public School at Dooru village in Sopore in Baramullah. According to the officials, the cost of the land is estimated to be Rs 30 crore.

NIA team has found that the land for the school was donated in 2001 to Thereek-e-Hurriyat, an organization floated by Geelani. A 5.3 acre of school land was directly transferred to Geelani as its owner in 2006 and later 1.7 acres was transferred to his son Naseem in March 2017 from one GM Bhatt, who was the school principal. Naseem, who has been summoned by the NIA, was made the lifelong patron of the Mili Trust that operates the school in December last year.

“Since Geelani is growing old, he wanted all the land to be bequeathed to his family members,” said an NIA official. “Naseem could not be made the chairman due to protests, but he was made a life-long patron of the school this year, even as two teachers along with school principal Bhatt, protested against this forceful decision,” the NIA added.

The NIA probe has documented that Naseem, who works as assistant professor at Sher-e-Kashmir Agriculture University, owns a house which costs around 70 Lakh in 2006.

Geelani’s family refuted the NIA charges. “I’ve nothing to hide. Our family has always been subjected to torture and harassment and it continues,” said Naseem in a statement, claiming that his bank balance at the time of receiving NIA notice was less than Rs 500, while he has a loan liability of Rs 23 lakh.

Not far from the school, Geelani also allegedly owns a two-storey house in the same village. According to NIA probe, the house has around 10 rooms. Estimated to be worth Rs 4 crore, its occupants are eldest daughter Zamshida and her husband. The probe found Geelani has a half-acre land in Sopore, believed to be 30-year-old, and is being transferred to the separatist’s daughters Anisha and Farhat.

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