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Govt declares Kashmir doctor in Saudi Arabia as terrorist amid fresh threats from TRF

Asif Maqbool Dar is a Kashmiri physician who has been linked with Pak-backed terror group Hizbul Mujahideen

Srinagar: The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has in a fresh crackdown started declaring Kashmiri separatists operating from some foreign countries including Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey as terrorists. A Kashmiri physician, purportedly based in Saudi Arabia, is the latest who has been declared as an individual terrorist under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act-1967.

According to the MHA notification issued on Saturday, 41-year-old Dr Asif Maqbool Dar of Bandey Payeen, Tehsil Wagoora, District Baramulla, who also lived in Bemina Srinagar, and is currently based at Dammam, Ash Sharqiyah, Saudi Arabia, is associated with the designated terror outfit Hizbul Mujahideen.

“Dr. Asif Maqbool Dar is accused in a case investigated by the National Investigation Agency relating to conspiracy hatched by the cadres of terrorist organisation to undertake violent terrorist act in Jammu and Kashmir and major cities in India including New Delhi on the direction of handlers based across the border,” reads the MHA notification.

Reportedly holding an Indian passport and based in Saudi Arabia and Turkey, Dar has been recklessly issuing video blogs through social media after August 2019 against the mainstream Kashmiri politicians, media persons and others whom he calls “paid agents, stooges and collaborators of India”. He has been explicitly provoking the Kashmiris, particularly the youths, to join the uprising against India and fight for Kashmir’s “freedom”.

On 5 January 2023, MHA designated Mohammad Amin Butt aka Abu Khubaib of Kathawa, Tehsil Phagsoo, District Doda, Jammu, currently based in Pakistan as a terrorist under UAPA. He has been mentioned as a ‘launching commander’ of the banned terror outfit Lashkar-e-Tayyiba. He has been included at serial number 50 of the list.

A terrorist-turned-journalist-turned-activist, Mukhtar Baba of Srinagar, currently based in Turkey, has been named in a terror chargesheet by the State Investigation Agency (SIA) in Jammu and Kashmir. Baba is among dozens of the Kashmiris who have travelled overseas on Indian Passports and have been running a sustained propaganda campaign, including threats, against India. Most of these activists are reportedly based in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, some other Gulf countries, Turkey, the UK, Europe and the USA.

Those designated and declared as banned terror organisations last week include TRF, which according to the government dossier is a front for LeT, and Peoples Anti-Fascist Front (APFF), allegedly a front for the JeM.

Just a day after it was banned for issuing threats to ‘outsiders’ and members of the minority Hindu community in Kashmir, TRF on Saturday came out with a fresh threat. It has denied its affiliation to LeT and other terror groups operating in Kashmir.

“Rest we want to warn those elements who try to malign this struggle by their traitorous acts and become the scapegoats should refrain from their acts otherwise the end will be worst for them. The list that has been uploaded is not just a list but our cadre is working on it. We don’t give warning but we act… I assure you all that coming days are going to be hell for the collaborators, stooges and all those traitors whosoever advocate illegal occupation of Fascist Indian regime as legitimate”, reads the group’s fresh threat to the Kashmiri Pandit employees who have been given ‘safe’ postings in Kashmir and whose names have been published in a hit list by the TRF early this year.

In the year 2022, a number of organisations and individuals, mostly affiliated to the designated terror groups LeT, Jaish-e-Mohammad and Hizbul Mujahideen, and operating from some foreign countries, have been declared as terrorists by the MHA notifications.

On 18 April 2022, MHA declared 47-year-old Sheikh Sajad aka Sajjad Gul of Zainakote Srinagar, purportedly based in Pakistan as a terrorist under UAPA. According to a dossier, Gul, the son of a doctor, who too travelled to Pakistan on an Indian Passport, has been operating the terror blog ‘KashmirFight’, issuing threats and running a smear campaign against the Kashmiri journalists, academics and intellectuals whom he sees as “Indian agents”. The same blog, which has been banned across India but is available in rest of the world, had published slander and threats to journalist Shujaat Bukhari and advocate Babar Qadri who were subsequently gunned down by unidentified terrorists in Srinagar in 2018 and 2020 respectively.

Also Read: In fresh crackdown on terror, government bans Lashkar offshoot TRF after Rajouri carnage