$ 1-lakh Hawala haul just Farooq playing dirty: Yasin
24 March 2002
The Indian Express
UDHAMPUR: THE state police today claimed to have busted a hawala racket with a huge currency haul on the 300-km long Jammu-Srinagar national highway near Kud. Two persons, including a girl, were arrested and one lakh US dollars seized from them. About Rs 18,000 in Indian currency was also claimed to have been seized. A police spokesman alleged that the money was meant for Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) and senior Hurriyat Conference leader Yasin Malik. The police identified the arrested people as Mushtaq Ahmed Dar of Banpora (Batmaloo) and Shazia Rasool of Bypass (Batmaloo). The two, said the police, were travelling in a car from Nepal where the money was given to them by JKLF’s Pakistan-based international spokesman Altaf Qadri. Malik described the entire controversy as ‘‘cheap’’ tactics by the government to malign his image. ‘‘I was already expecting my arrest in view of my stand on the elections but I never thought that they would stoop so low,’’ he said, adding ‘‘they have started a media war’’. Admitting that Mushtaq was once district commander and also military spokesman of JKLF when the organisation was involved in an armed struggle in Kashmir, the JKLF leader said he was arrested by the police in 1988. And, after his release from jail, Mushtaq had snapped all links with the organisation. Malik said he would quit politics if it was proved that Shazia had ever met him or that Altaf Qadri had visited Nepal ever since he left the Valley six years ago.