A probe conducted by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has found that militants had used former Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) MLA Aijaz Ahmad Mir's car to carry out the 2017 Amarnath Yatra attack.

The militants had opened fire at the pilgrims who were travelling on a bus towards the Amarnath Temple, leaving eight dead and 18 injured. The Jammu and Kashmir Police had arrested Mir's driver after suspecting his connection to the militants.

The NIA has sent a communication to J&K Police Additional Director General which mentions Aijaz as "having a soft corner towards separatists" and "one of his vehicles being used in the Amarnath attack."

An NIA official told News18 that Mir may be involved in pro-militant activities in the valley, although there is no proof yet.

Mir was a former MLA of the Mehbooba Mufti-led PDP from Wachi constituency in Shopian. He has said that he is open to any investigation and could never be a part of the militant attack. He says that he and his father had fought elections despite the threat from militant outfits.

Mir also said that there is a huge question mark on the transparency of the NIA investigations like questions especially when they are acting at the behest of the central government.

aijaz mir
Peoples Democratic Party's former MLA from Wachi, Shopian, Aijaz Ahmad Mir , who the NIA has alleged has a sof corner towards separatists.Twitter

This is not for the first time that Mir has been in news for the wrong reasons. In 2018, a personal security officer deputed with the MLA had decamped with seven rifles and a personal weapon from his official residence at Jawahar Nagar in Srinagar. The PSO went on to join Hizbul Mujahideen and his pictures with the weapons had later gone viral on social media.

This had led the J&K government to withdraw the J&K police personnel who were deputed in the personal security teams of VIPs and other senior police officials.

Mir has also been vocal about his support to the families of militants. He had recently condemned the police action of firing at the mourners who participated in the funeral of a militant in Sugan area of Shopian. He had also called the militants as "martyrs" last year, which was condemned by BJP.

Incidentally, PDP chairperson and former Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has also expressed her sympathies towards the militants' families and urged the state government and security forces from desisting on harassing them.