A former politician from Kashmir has been arrested for supplying weapons to terrorists by India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA). The arrest was made as part of an investigation into Davinder Singh a senior J&K police officer arrested in January while transporting top militants of the terrorist group Hizbul Mujahideen.
NIA arrests former Shopian Sarpanch
A former sarpanch, from Shopian in South Kashmir has been arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in a case registered in January, after a J&K police officer Davinder Singh was caught travelling in a car with a Hizbul Mujahideen militant.
The suspect, Tariq Ahmad Mir, 36, was arrested by the NIA on Wednesday. An official said his name cropped up during the interrogation of Naveed Mushtaq Shah, the Hizbul Mujahideen militant. Shah reportedly told interrogators that Mir was involved in providing weapons to other terrorist groups.
An official said the NIA had raided multiple locations in February and Mir’s house was one of them, but he was not arrested then.
“Mir is an arms conduit, he was arrested and produced in court which granted six day custody. Further interrogation is on,” a senior NIA official said.
Tariq Ahmad Mir
Tariq Ahmad Mir, a sarpanch (village chief) from Wachi in J&K’s Shopian district, contested the 2014 Assembly polls on a BJP ticket. He even shared the stage with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during an election rally in Srinagar in December 2014.
Meanwhile, J&K BJP has said the party has nothing to do with those involved in anti-national activities and Tariq Ahmad Mir had been expelled two years ago.
“Panchayat elections (in December 2018) were held on non-party basis. We expelled him from the party in October 2018,” Altaf Thakur, a BJP spokesperson, said, adding, “We don’t know how he managed party ticket for Assembly elections in 2014,” reported NDTV.
Tariq Mir, who was a resident of J&K’s Shopian district, had earlier been protected by two police officers despite intelligence agencies warning of possible terror links six months ago. Police have said his protection was removed last year.
“Intelligence agencies had warned that he was hand-in-glove with terrorists and is up to serious mischief,” a police officer said.
J&K DSP Davinder Singh case
Mir has been arrested in connection with Deputy Superintendent of Police, Davinder Singh whose arrest created a sensation as he was found in the company of Naveed Shah, a former police constable and one of the ‘most wanted terrorists’ in J&K. Shah was behind the killing of 11 truck drivers, non-local labourers and apple traders in south Kashmir after the removal of special status for Kashmir – the abrogation of Article 370.
Subscribe to GGI via Email
A day before Davinder Singh’s arrest he had been posted at Srinagar International Airport to receive 15 foreign diplomats, including the United States envoy, when they arrived for a two-day visit in January.
After his arrest multiple raids were conducted at his home and other hideouts and large caches of arms and ammunition were recovered. Questions were also raised over why transporting of terrorists to Delhi ahead of Republic Day.
Davinder Singh was mired in controversy earlier after reports that it was he who sent Afzal Guru to Delhi and arranged logistics for Pakistani terrorists’ attack on parliament.
Although Mir may not directly be involved in Davinder Singh’s case, he played an important role in providing weapons to several terrorist groups active in Kashmir Valley including the Hizbul.
Pulwama Attack 2019
Shopian has been a center of controversy during the 2019 Pulwama attack as well. A curious thing happened soon after news about the Pulwama terror attack broke out. This was the resurrection of a fake terror attack in Shopian by local politicians and peddled by Indian media – an attack that never took place.
On the night of the Pulwama attack, Sameed Kakroo, Jammu Bureau chief of Greater Kashmir, tweeted a screenshot of a press release statement issued by J&K BJP Media Cell.
While the entire nations mourns the martyrdom of #CRPF soldiers in Awantipora, the former deputy CM @KavinderGupta from @BJP4JnK condoles “death of CRPF soldiers in a police post of Shopian”. Wow. Incompetency at its peak. @OmarAbdullah @MehboobaMufti @INCIndia @jkpdp pic.twitter.com/pr3IumU77t
— Sameed Kakroo (@sameedkakroo) February 14, 2019
This press release was the first instance to put out such news. Three hours later the same was broadcast by Indian national media. A senior police official of the Shopian district himself called out the “fake news”, forcing the news media outlets to admit the “mistake” and issue a clarification.
— Sandeep (@Sandeep_IPS_JKP) February 14, 2019
GreatGameIndia is a journal on Geopolitics and International Relations. Get to know the Geopolitical threats India is facing in our exclusive book India in Cognitive Dissonance. Past magazine issues can be accessed from the Archives section.