SRINAGAR: Hafiz Saeed, chief of Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), a Pakistani group designated as terrorist by India was placed under a 90-day house arrest which Islamabad Tuesday indicated could be extended.
Saeed was detained yesterday at JuD’s Lahore headquarters at Masjid Al-Qudsia Chauburji and was later shifted to his Jauhar Town residence which has been declared as a sub-jail by authorities in Punjab province.
“The government has detained Saeed and four other JuD and Falaha-i-Insanyat (FIF) leaders for 90 days with effect from January 30 but this detention may further be extended on completion of this period if required,” a Pakistan Interior Ministry official said.
“This is a policy decision that the state took in national interest. Lots of institutions will have to do their jobs,” Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, the Director General Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations said.
Saeed blamed his house arrest on the growing rapport between newly elected US President Donald Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The action against Hafiz Saeed follows the US President Donald Trump’s ban on entry of nationals from 7 Muslim countries. Pakistani officials have implied that fear of similar action against Pakistan was a factor in the action against Hafiz Saeed.
Last evening while being led away, Hafiz Sayeed had said, “This is taking place because of Modi’s insistence, Trump’s pressure and Pakistan’s helplessness,” news agency Reuters has reported.
India has reacted cautiously to the house arrest of Hafiz Saeed. He had been put under house arrest after the 26/11 terror attack in Mumbai but was released six months later.
“Exercises such as yesterday’s orders against Hafiz Saeed and others have been carried out by Pakistan in the past also,” said foreign ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup. Only a “credible crackdown” will be proof of Pakistan’s sincerity, he added.
Saeed and four other JuD leaders were taken into custody and put under house arrest following order of detention was issued by Punjab Province’s Interior Ministry yesterday in pursuance to a directive from the Federal Interior Ministry on January 27.
“Although they belong to different districts of Punjab but the government has decided to place them under arrest in one house in Lahore,” he said.
Saeed, who was allowed to hold a press conference before he left for his home along with dozens of his supporters amid high police security, said, “my detention order has come from Washington and not Islamabad.”
Saeed is an alleged mastermind behind 2008 Mumbai attack.
“If someone thinks that placing me under house arrest will help check freedom movement in Kashmir he is living in a fool’s paradise. My arrest will give a fresh impetus to the Kashmiris’ struggle against India,” he said.
68-year-old Saeed further said if Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi thinks that he would get respite in Kashmir after his arrest he is seriously mistaken. “We have declared 2017 a year of solidarity for Kashmiris,” he said adding that all programs planned for February 5 will be held across Pakistan and Pakistan administered Kashmir (PaK).
He vowed to challenge his house arrest in the Lahore High Court.
United Jihad Council (UJC) Chief Syed Salah-ud-din, on Tuesday condemned the house arrest of Hafiz Saeed terming it cowardice and depressing act.
In an emailed statement issued to KNS, the UJC spokesperson, Syed Sadaqat Hussain, quoting the Salah ud din, said, Kashmiri movement is in its critical phase and putting their lives in danger, every Kashmiri is desperate about its goal.
According to the statement, the UJC chief has said, Hafiz Saeed would raise the voice for Kashmiris and we must put aside all the differences and work together for the resolution of Kashmir.
He demanded immediate end of house arrest of Hafiz Saeed.
He is our Muhammad Bin Qasim: Asiya Andrabi
Comparing Saeed to 7th century Arab general Muhammad bin Qasim who conqured Sindh, Dukhtaran-e-Millat (DeM) chairperson, Asiya Andrabi said it was evident that the government of Pakistan has succumbed to the pressures from India and US. She said the time chosen for the move is more shocking as Saeed and his organisations were celebrating Asharah Yakjahti for oppressed Kashmiris.
Andrabi said that the organisations run by Saeed have been busy in helping people and spreading the message of Islam and have never harmed any non-muslim and was working hard against the evil designs of Indian agencies in Balochistan to disintegrate Pakistan.
He is a Muslim and is serving people according to the Islamic principles, she said.
The Islamic work of Saeed has not gone down well with the anti-Islam America, she said and India is Americas partner in anti-Islam agenda.
Pakistan is considered to be the fort of Islam so Islam and Muslims should be safe guarded there.
She said, This decision has hurt the Kashmiris emotionally, for Saeed is a Mohsin of Kashmiris
The government of Pakistan should have thought of the consequences, the decision will have on the psyche of Kashmiris.