Four separatists have been arrested by the Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) Police for selling MBBS seats in Pakistan to certain students from the union territory (UT).
They were subsequently using the money thus obtained for funding terrorism. Some of the detained individuals also belong to the Hurriyat Conference.
A case was filed in July 2020 by the Counter Intelligence (Kashmir) over Hurriyat separatists joining hands with educational consultancies to sell MBBS seats and seats in several professional courses in colleges and universities based in Pakistan.
The case has been registered under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
An official spokesperson quoted in a report by the Economic Times mentioned that the money collected through these corrupt activities was used to finance terrorism and separatism-related affairs.
Moreover, these seats were consciously given to the relatives or closed ones of killed terrorists.
“Evidence also came on record to show that money was put into channels that ended up supporting programmes and projects pertaining to terrorism and separatism. For example, payment for organising stone pelting also could also be traced and brought on record,” the said spokesperson commented on the issue.
The case was pursued through raids on about 12 locations in the Kashmir valley in order to verify the money trail. About 80 such cases from 2014-18 were assessed, and it was revealed in the report that the Pakistani ISI kicked off this program in order to incentivise terrorism by compensating the families of killed terrorists.
In fact, a single MBBS seat cost Rs 10-12 lakh but this was reduced according to the weightage and influence of the Hurriyant separatist who intervened into the matters.
A cautious projection says that around Rs 4 crore could have been pumped into these aforementioned unscrupulous activities annually. The conducted investigations even establish the time frame during which the amounts were collected from students and their parents and subsequently directed for the use of terrorists and separatists.