The National Investigation Agency on Wednesday searched 16 locations in various parts of Kashmir and Delhi as part of its investigation in terror funding, PTI reported. Several traders in Srinagar and North Kashmir, and at least five traders in Delhi were raided by the NIA officials.

“These raids have been conducted mainly in connection with our probe into the cross-Line of Control trade,” NIA chief Sharad Kumar told the Hindustan Times. LoC trade was launched in 2008 and is considered to be a major confidence-building measure between India and Pakistan. Of the 1,200 businesses allowed to trade, 50 are under scrutiny by the NIA, unidentified officials told the newspaper.

These raids are part of an investigation into the alleged militancy funding by Pakistan-based groups to stoke unrest in the Valley. Seven separatist leaders, including Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s son-in-law Altaf Ahmed Shah, were arrested in July in connection with the case.

NIA arrests two alleged stone-pelters

The raids come a day after the investigating agency arrested two people, including a freelance photojournalist, for allegedly throwing stones and mobilising support against the security forces. The arrested men were identified as Javed Ahmed Bhat of Kulgam and Kamran Yusuf from Pulwama, Rising Kashmir reported.

Yusuf had contributed photographs from the Valley to several local newspapers. The NIA believes they circulated photographs and videos on social media that sparked tension in Kashmir, The Times of India reported.