New Delhi: Charges
were today framed against a close aide of hardline Hurriyat leader Syed
Ali Shah Geelani and three others, arrested for allegedly running hawala
racket to fund banned terrorist outfit Hizbul Mujahideen in Kashmir
Valley, by a Delhi court, paving the way for their trial.
Judge H S Sharma framed charges under various sections of the Unlawful
Activities (Prevention) Act against Ghulam Mohd Bhat, said to be Geelani's
close aide, Mohd Siddiq Ganai, Ghulam Jeelani Liloo and Farooq Ahmed
Dagga, who are presently in Tihar jail under judicial custody.
charges have been explained to each accused in detail. They have pleaded
not guilty," the judge said adding the trial would commence from April 16.
National Investigation Agency (NIA) had last year filed charge sheet
against the four, indicting them for procuring over Rs 4.57 crore from
Pakistan through hawala channels within three years after 2008 for funding
terrorist activities in the Valley.
The Special Cell of Delhi
Police, on January 22 last year, had arrested Srinagar-based lawyer Bhat,
Ganai, Liloo and Dagga from Jammu and Kashmir on a tip-off that they were
carrying hawala money, allegedly meant for terror outfits in the valley.
It had also recovered Rs 21.20 lakh from them.
The case was later
handed over to the NIA. During the probe, the NIA as well as the police
had questioned Geelani, who had reportedly told the investigators that he
was receiving funds from various sources but had no links with Bhat in