JAMMU: Better late than never! Narendra Modi government has finally cracked down on Kashmir’s neo-riches. This is a class within the class that has thrived post 1990 on blood of poor innocent young men who were sold the dreams of entering heaven after embracing bullets. None of the ‘heaven-seekers’ or their kin, however, never asked why they only; and why not the near and dear ones of the dream merchants.
The death merchants of Kashmir are currently in real soup. They are getting exposed after every minute. The wealth they acquired by selling the blood of their co-religionists, unfortunately in the name of religion, is haunting them. The money and the assets have become a liability that is going to prove last nail in their coffin.
Believe a national television channel, “SAS Geelani owns a two-storey ancestral bungalow in Dooru, Sopore, worth around Rs 1 crore. He has an office-cum-residence in Rehmatabad Colony registered in the name of Milli Trust and a two-storey house in Barazulla has been transferred to JEL, J&K. Then there is the Unique Public School in Srinagar. Land for which has been partially donated by villagers while the rest of the land is owned by Geelani. He also owns a two-bedroom house in Delhi’s Khirki Extension which he bought for Rs 8 lakh and is registered in the name of GM Bhat, a Hawala conduit. A two-storey house in Srinagar’s Bagh-e-Mehtab registered in the name of Geelani’s eldest daughter. The bungalow in Bemina area of Srinagar is in the name of another daughter. Geelani’s son Nayeem owns agricultural land near Srinagar’s Rawalpore bypass, along with his brother Naseem. An orchard in Sopore and an eight-room house in Sant Nagar, Srinagar, are also registered in his name. Nayeem’s other properties include a flat in Delhi’s Vasant Kunj and a house in Auxiliary Police Lane, Srinagar.
Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Chairman of Awami Action Committee, has invested heavily in Dubai. Sources told CNN-News18 that Farooq has acquired massive amount of benami properties in the name of his family. A Deputy Superintendent of Police (DySP) is said to be a facilitator in these deals.
Nayeem Khan, currently on remand with the NIA, has a house in Barzulla, Srinagar, worth around Rs 75 lakh. He also has an apple orchard, two houses in Pathanpora, and a limestone quarry – Asian Minerals – under his brother Muneer’s name. The quarry is believed to be worth around Rs 2 crore.
Another arrested separatist and J&K Democratic Freedom Party founder Shabir Shah owns land and a house in Afandi Bagh Sanat Nagar. Hotel Bahal Shah in Pahalgam is also registered in his name. Among other properties, he has a house and two plots in Srinagar’s Narbal, two houses in Rawalpora. He has dealership of many agencies with a saily turnover of Rs 4 to Rs 5 lakh.
The ‘terrorist’ turned politician Yasin Malik lives in a house in Maisuma area of Srinagar valued at Rs 1.5 crore. Sources said, “The JKLF office in Maisuma, worth around Rs 2 crore, is registered in the name of a relative. However, Malik is supposed to be the real owner of the property. He owns at least eight properties in Srinagar and Nowgan. He is also reported to have invested in wholesale business in Koker Bazaar”.
These are just tip of iceberg. A common Kashmiri knows the fortune these top separatists, their conduits and the over-ground workers of various terror organizations have acquired during the past over two and half decades. They also know how ‘neo-riches’ in business, politics and media have grown beyond imagination post militancy.
While the poor Kashmiris have become poorer, those trading their miseries and exploiting their sentiments have raised castles over the dead, who have been made to rehabilitate grave yards. Nowhere in a conflict zone around the world, has economy got such a boost as in Kashmir. The Valley suburbs are flourishing with palatial houses, mals and modern infrastructures. The only difference is that these are owned by the people who have turned neo-riches after launching ‘Jihad’. If any ordinary Kashmiri is asked about the single achievement of the ‘Jihad, he will raise his fingers towards the palatial houses and flourishing businesses of those who remained master-mind of a cult, unleashed by Pakistan, that is alien to Kashmiris.
For all these years, since 1990, Kashmir society has been privately conversing about India’s covert understanding with the neo-riches (separatists) of the Valley, as no attempt has ever been made by the economic enforcement directorate or any other wing of tax enforcement department to find out where from these huge assets have been managed by chosen few in Kashmir. In a conflict situation, managing two square meals has been a difficult proposition for an ordinary Kashmiri, particularly during the times when the whole Valley remains standstill by Bandhs and Hartals. It has been difficult for people dependent on daily earnings to sustain their families. In such a scenario, how could people like Mirwaiz Umar, Yasin Malik, Shabir Shah apart from Geelani live king-size life.
It is time for the Centre and the NIA to take the ongoing campaign against Kashmiri parasites to logical conclusion and expand its scope down below. The entire neo-rich class of the Valley has to be exposed and punished.
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© 2017 State Times Daily Newspaper