Mumbai terror attacks mastermind Hafiz Saeed arrested, sent to 7-day judicial custody
Hafiz Saeed arrest comes ahead of the International Court of Justice's verdict in a case relating to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, whose death sentence by a Pakistani military court based on an "extracted confession" has been questioned by India
Mumbai terror attack mastermind and JuD chief Hafiz Saeed has been arrested from Lahore. Saeed was arrested on Wednesday by the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) of Pakistan's Punjab Province when he was on his way to Gujranwala from Lahore.
Jamatud Dawa's Hafiz Saeed arrested and sent to judicial custody: Pakistan media (file pic) pic.twitter.com/1Txu9BlvoK— ANI (@ANI) July 17, 2019
He has been moved to an unknown location, the officials said. Saeed-led JuD is believed to be the front organisation for the Lashkar-e-Taiba which is responsible for carrying out the 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed 166 people.
Following his arrest, Saaed was sent to seven-day judicial custody on terror financing charges.
Speaking to ARY News, spokesperson of the Chief Minister of Pakistan's Punjab province Shahbaz Gill said that Hafiz's arrest was made under the ongoing National Action Plan (NAP), reports ANI. The spokesperson refused to share any further details in this regard.
The US Department of the Treasury has designated Hafiz Saeed as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist, and the US, since 2012, has offered a USD 10 million reward for information that brings Saeed to justice.
Under pressure from the international community, Pakistani authorities have launched investigations into matters of the JuD and LeT regarding their holding and use of trusts to raise funds for terrorism financing.
The arrest comes ahead of the International Court of Justice's verdict in a case relating to Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav, whose death sentence by a Pakistani military court based on an "extracted confession" has been questioned by India.
Jadhav, 49, a retired Indian Navy officer, was sentenced to death by the Pakistani military court on charges of "espionage and terrorism" after a closed trial in April 2017. His sentencing evoked a sharp reaction in India.
President of the Court Judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf will read out the verdict during a public sitting which will take place at 3 pm (6.30 pm IST) on Wednesday at the Peace Palace in The Hague, Netherlands.
On July 15, 2019, Hafiz Saeed and his three aides were granted pre-arrest bail by an anti-terrorism court in Pakistan, which stopped police from arresting them till August 3 in a land grabbing case for a seminary. Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC), Lahore, Judge Javed Iqbal Warriach granted pre-arrest bail to Saeed and his three aides - Hafiz Masood, Ameer Hamza, and Malik Zafar - until August 3 against the surety bonds of Rs 50,000 each.
Earlier, Dawn newspaper reported that the ATC granted interim bail to the JuD leaders until August 31. The Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) had registered an FIR against Saeed and others for illegally grabbing a piece of land in Lahore and setting up a seminary.
Saeed and other three's counsel Imran Fazal told the court that his clients were not involved in grabbing of the land in question. He termed the allegation baseless. A lawyer representing the CTD said Saeed and his three aides are involved in land grabbing. "They grabbed the land and set up a seminary there," he said. Judge Warriach, however, stopped the CTD of Punjab police from arresting Saeed and his three aides in this case till August 3. According to officials, JuD's network includes 300 seminaries and schools, hospitals, a publishing house, and ambulance service.
In March, Punjab police said that government seized control of 160 seminaries, 32 schools, two colleges, four hospitals, 178 ambulances and 153 dispensaries associated with the JuD and its charity wing the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) in the province. Read the full story here.
With inputs from agencies
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