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NIA quizzes senior Congress leader in terror attack probe

NIA quizzes senior Congress leader in terror attack probe

Jammu: The NIA on Tuesday questioned senior Congress leader and former minister G M Saroori in connection with its probe into terror attacks in Kishtwar district of Jammu and Kashmir.

Saroori, 67, who is Jammu and Kashmir Congress vice president and three-time legislator from Inderwal constituency of Kishtwar, was served a notice under Section 160 CrPC by the NIA, asking him to appear before it to answer "certain questions" relating to a case registered by the probe agency in the district in 2018.

"The questioning lasted for nearly one-and-a-half hour from 3.30 pm and my father assured full support to the NIA in its probe. He reached the office at the scheduled time at 11 am but the investigating officer was late," Shariq Saroori, the son of the Congress leader, said. Shariq said his father made it clear to the NIA that his family is nationalist by core and their house is guarded by the CRPF round-the-clock, when he was asked about the disclosure made by some arrested persons that someone was dropped in a lane leading to their house.

Earlier, G M Saroori said he does not know why he was summoned by the NIA.

"I was outside and had reached Jammu this morning. Do you think I have any connection with Hizbul Mujahideen or Osama (a slain terrorist)," he told reporters.

The communally sensitive Kishtwar had been rocked by a series of terror incidents since November 2018 after the hilly district was declared terrorism-free over a decade ago. The longest surviving Hizbul Mujahdeen terrorist, Mohammad Amin Bhat alias "Jehangir Saroori", is dubbed as the brain behind the revival of terrorism in the district.

Terrorists shot dead senior BJP leader Anil Parihar and his brother Ajit Parihar on November 1, 2018, while RSS

functionary Chanderkant Sharma and his PSO were assassinated on April 9, 2019. The militants also snatched the service rifle of the deputy commissioner's PSO on March 8, 2019, and the rifle of the PSO of the People's Democratic Party district president on September 13 last year.

The NIA is investigating the terror cases.

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