Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Trying to slink off to Srinagar, Geelani held at IGI Airport by Karn Pratap Singh

Trying to slink off to Srinagar, Geelani held at IGI Airport by Karn Pratap Singh 

Despite being served notice for not leaving the city without informing the investigating agency, Hurriyat faction leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani attempted to leave the Capital on Tuesday.

The Special Cell of Delhi Police, however, detained him at Indira Gandhi International Airport’s Terminal-3, where he and his son had gone to board a flight for Srinagar. Geelani was brought to Lodhi Colony office of the Special Cell and interrogated for at least four hours for his alleged involvement in the hawala racket.

The Delhi Police had served a notice on Geelani on February 22 asking him to join the investigation in a hawala case, in which four Hizb-ul-Mujahideen terrorists arrested by the Special Cell on January 22 this year had named him. Geelani, however, showed his inability in joining the investigation claiming he was not well and was undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Delhi. The Special Cell served a fresh notice on him asking him to indicate a convenient date and time when he could meet an officer investigating the case of hawala transactions.

Confirming that Geelani was stopped from going to Srinagar, Special Commissioner of Police (special cell) PN Aggarwal said, “He was called in to join investigation related to a hawala case.

Our investigating officials questioned him over the matter.” Sources in the Special Cell revealed that Geelani was taken to Special Cell’s Lodhi Colony office around 11 am and questioned in connection with his alleged role in the hawala racket, besides the reason for leaving the city without informing the investigating agency.

“Despite repeated attempts he could not give any satisfactory reason to leave for Srinagar,” said the source adding he was allowed to leave the Special cell office around 3 pm. The separatist leader was under observation at his Malviya Nagar residence from the time he was served a notice by the investigating agency. Four cops in plain clothes were keeping a round-the-clock watch on his movement and on Tuesday morning they learnt about his movement to IGI Airport.

The recently-unearthed hawala trail in the Kashmir Valley has put the spotlight on some senior leaders of the Hurriyat Conference, following which the head of the hardline faction of the separatist group, Geelani, was asked not to leave Delhi so that he could be questioned.

Spokesman of hardline faction of Hurriyat Conference Ayaz Akbar had alleged if Geelani was being implicated in the hawala case it would be construed as an attempt to defame the movement in Kashmir. Akbar also confirmed that Geelani was taken to Lodhi Colony while he was going to catch a flight to Kashmir.

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