Pak defence minister speaking language of US, India: Hafiz Saeed on crackdown
Talking to British media, Saeed negated Defence Minister Khurram Dastgir’s statement that the government has launched a crackdown on Hafiz Saeed-led JuD and Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) under the ‘Operation Radul Fasaad’ not under US pressure.
Responding to a question, Saeed said that he had not received any official notice to declare his party a terrorist outfit, adding that the allegations were baseless.
He said, “The defence minister is speaking language of India and US as both countries desired action against him”.
JuD chief said, “Some political elements launched a campaign against him by following agenda of others”.
He further clarified that JuD had no link with the Haqqani network and deteriorated situation in Afghanistan, but asserted that the US should quit Afghanistan.
The cleric said that relations between India and Pakistan should be normalized but a bone of contention, Kashimr issue, must be resolved.
Earlier on Wednesday, Khurram Dastgir Khan talking to BBC said the government has launched crackdown after “serious deliberations.”
The government has banned Saeed-led JuD and FIF from collecting donations on Monday. The government has also banned companies and individuals from making donations to the JuD, the FIF and other organisations on the UNSC sanctions list.
The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) issued a notification prohibiting the collection of donations by the JuD, the front organisation of banned outfit Lashkar- e-Taiba (LeT), as well as several other such organisations named in a list of banned outfits by the UN Security Council.
“We have taken action against the JuD and the FIF not on the pressure of the Trump administration. We have initiated action against Saeed’s organisations after ‘serious deliberations’. It is not taken in haste,” Khurram Dastgir said.
He said the action was part of the ‘Operation Radul Fasaad’, launched in February last year by the Pak army to disarm and eliminate the hidden terrorist sleeper cells across the country with support of local law enforcement agencies.
“We have taken action against the organisations which are on the UNSC sanctions list, so that our children remain safe in schools. We do not want that one day they (people associated with these organisations) attack their own country with guns,” the minister said.
The PML-N government is also considering taking over the control of charities run by the JuD and the FIF. If action is taken, the JuD may lose its headquarters in Muridke, near Lahore, to the government.
Yesterday, the JuD and the FIF activists held a rally outside its headquarters in Muridke in protest against the government action and also blocked a road.
Addressing the rally, JuD leader Hafiz Abdur Rehman Maki alleged that the action against the JuD and the FIF has been taken on the pressure of the US and India.
“Those trying to strangle the JuD and the FIF will soon be in the grip of Allah. We are not committing any crime to serve the humanity,” he said.
Maki also said that any move by the government to take the control of ‘Markaz-e-Taiba’ (the JuD headquarters) and charity would not be accepted.
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