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Omar glare on arrest

Srinagar, March 23: The Omar Abdullah government today questioned the arrest of Syed Liyaqat Shah, a Kashmiri whose family says he was a surrendered militant returning home, by Delhi police who have accused him of plotting a Holi attack.

The chief minister telephoned Union home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde to ask for a time-bound inquiry by the NIA, sources said.

The issue also rocked the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly, where junior home minister Sajjad Kichloo revealed that the state had asked Delhi police for details.

The special cell of Delhi police arrested Liyaqat on March 20 from Gorakhpur and alleged that he was a Hizb-ul Mujahideen militant.

Liyaqat’s family, who live in Kupwara, have said he was returning home from Pakistan via Nepal with his second wife and step-daughter under a rehabilitation policy the state government announced in 2010. He had crossed the LoC in the mid-90s.

Akhtar-un-Nisa and her daughter reached Liyaqat’s home today. “This (Delhi police claim) is a big lie,” she said. Liyaqat was arrested after the police asked them to show their identity cards. “We told them we don’t have identity cards but have Pakistani passports. We also told them our visit back home has been cleared by authorities in (J&K).”