SRINAGAR: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) could manage to convict Yasin Malik in the funding case with the help of key witnesses, whom the investigator protected by code-naming them, newspaper The Tribune quoted the officials in the agency as having said.
Newspaper The Tribune quoted the officials as having said that in view of the possibility of their being killed, given the nature of the case and the kind of people involved, the important protected witnesses were named as “Jack”, “John” and “Alpha” to hide their identities.
Besides the witnesses, the investigating team had seized around 600 electronic devices during its raids at 70 places during the course probe and trial spanning around five years, as the case was first registered by the agency in May 2017, they added. A special NIA court in Delhi sentenced Malik to life imprisonment on May 25.
According to the officials, there were around 25 protected witnesses and among them, a few had been given code names, whose depositions were crucial in the court. The case was probed by a NIA team led by Inspector General Anil Shukla, a 1996-batch IPS officer from the AGMUT cadre.
Shukla, who is now posted in Andaman and Nicobar Islands had decided to follow the policy of having protected witnesses in the case so that there were no loopholes, the officials was quoted as having said.
According to the officials, the special NIA judge largely relied on protected and code-named witnesses among others, who mentioned the meetings between Syed Ali Shah Geelani, and Malik in November 2016 along with other Hurriyat leaders.
Another protected witness had stated it was Geelani and Malik who used to send him the protest calendar for publicity in newspapers, The Tribune quoted the officials as having said.