India court convicts Kashmir separatist leader in terror funding case
mhaqnawaz / Pixabay
India court convicts Kashmir separatist leader in terror funding case

A National Investigation Agency (NIA) Special Court in Delhi Thursday convicted Kashmiri separatist leader Yasin Malik in a case related to funding of terror activities in Jammu and Kashmir.

Special Judge Praveen Singh framed charges against Malik under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and the Indian Penal Code (IPC) earlier this year. Malik pleaded guilty to all charges on May 10, including sections 16 (terrorist act), 17 (raising funds for terrorist act), 18 (conspiracy to commit terrorist act), and 20 (being member of terrorist gang or organization) of the UAPA, and sections 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 124A (sedition) of the IPC. 

Malik, head of the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Fund, was arrested by NIA in 2019 along with a dozen other separatists, though the case was opened in 2017. Per the charge sheet, Kashmiri separatists, including Hafiz Saeed of Lashkar-e-Taiba, Syed Salahuddin of Hizb-ul-Mujahideen and Malik, were obtaining funds from Pakistani organizations for creating disturbance in the Kashmir Valley in 2017 by pelting stones on security forces, burning down schools, destructing public property, and organizing strikes and protests.

Judge Singh ordered an assessment of Malik’s financial situation for determining the amount of fine to be imposed, and will hear arguments on the quantum of the sentence on May 25. The maximum sentence in UAPA cases is the death penalty or life imprisonment.