Delhi: California almonds have emerged as the new product in cross-LoC trade in Jammu and Kashmir that are being used a mode of terror funding, according to the NIA.
The NIA has registered a case in this connection and carried out searches on traders at trade facilitation centres at Salamabad in Kashmir region's North Kashmir's Baramulla district and Chakan-da-bagh in Poonch district of Jammu region.
During the searches, documents related to exchange of California almonds were seized by NIA and were being scrutinised, the NIA said.
The traders from PoK were sending and receiving California almonds and it is alleged that the money was used for funding of terror groups in the state.
The NIA said in a statement that a reliable information was received that a large scale transfer of funds from Pakistan to India has been taking place, through the import of California almonds (badam giri) via the cross-LoC trade mechanism through the trade facilitation centres located at Salamabad and Chakkan-da-Bagh.
According to the cross-LoC trade agreement between India and Pakistan, products grown in both sides of Jammu and Kashmir will be exchanged under barter system. The products included 'Badam giri' that is grown in parts of Pakistan- occupied-Kashmir (PoK).
Following is the full statement by the agency:
Reliable information was received by the Central Government, that a large scale transfer of funds from Pakistan to India has been taking place, through the import of California Almonds (badam giri) via the Cross-LoC trade mechanism through the Trade Facilitation Centres (TFCs) located at Salamabad, Uri, District Baramulla and Chakkan-da-Bagh, District Poonch.
This is in gross violation of the State policy of prohibition on trade in ‘third-party origin goods’ through this mechanism and Information indicated that these funds are being used for fomenting terrorism and separatism in the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
The Central Government, having regard to the gravity of the said offence as well as its bearing on the National security is of the opinion that the offence involved is of raising funds for terrorist acts, which is punishable under section 17 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, a scheduled offence under the NIA Act, 2008.
In view of the aforesaid opinion, the Central Government has issued orders under section 6(5) of the NIA Act, 2008, directing the National Investigation Agency, to take up the investigation on the aforementioned information regarding the crime.
Accordingly, the NIA Police Station at New Delhi has registered a case vide case no. RC-17/2016/NIA/DLI dated 16th Dec, 2016 against commission of offences under section 17 of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 1967, as amended. An
An NIA team has presented the FIR before the NIA Special Court at Jammu and investigation teams of the NIA have conducted searches and seized several incriminating documents, at several places connected with the crime, in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, since the registration of the case.
NIA initiates investigation against terror funding through illegal trade in Jammu and Kashmir. https://t.co/3JcmaYZL59
— NIA India (@NIA_India) December 21, 2016
Earlier clothes and 'dupatta' (stole) were being used to finance terror in the state.
(With PTI inputs)