Days after the centre banned the Jamaat-e-Islami J&K (JeI), houses of dozens of workers and leaders of the group have been sealed by authorities at several locations across the Kashmir valley. Magistrates issued orders of sealing all institutions and properties linked to the JeI. The home ministry, on Thursday, had declared the JeI an unlawful organisation for five years, and over 200 of its workers were arrested in last four days.
The centre alleged that the JeI was "in close touch" with terror groups and is likely to "escalate secessionist movement" in Jammu and Kashmir. The notification, banning the group under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, was issued by the home ministry after a high-level meeting on security, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, following the Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF soldiers died in a suicide bombing by Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed.
The two main political parties of the state - the People's Democratic Party (PDP) and the National Conference (NC) criticized the centre's move to ban the JeI, J&K. "Why is the government so uncomfortable with Jamaat-e-Islami? Radicalised Hindu groups representing fringe elements are given carte blanche to spread misinformation and vitiate the atmosphere. But an organization that has worked tirelessly for Kashmiris is banned," said PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti.
NC general secretary, Ali Mohammad Sagar was also upset over the centre's decision, saying it will impede the process of reconciliation in the state, and demanded that the ban be lifted.
Meanwhile, the National Investigation Agency or NIA over the last five days, raided seven locations, including on the houses of separatists like Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, in connection with cases related to funding of terrorist and separatist groups in Jammu and Kashmir. The NIA claimed that it found "high-tech internet communication setup" from the residence of Mirwaiz Umer Farooq.
Letter heads of terrorist groups and visa recommendation letters for admission in Pakistan-based educational institutions were also found during the raids claimed the NIA.
This was the biggest crackdown on JeI in the state, in connection with helping terror groups, said sources, amid heightened cross-border tension.