NEW DELHI: Pakistan on Thursday reinstated the ban on the Hafiz Saeed-led Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and its charity arm, the Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF). However, Saeed, a co-founder of the Laskhar-e-Toiba (LeT) and the mastermind behind several attacks on India including the 26/11 Mumbai terror strike, continues to roam free.
While there was no official reaction from India, privately officials described it as optics. “It would be foolish to take this seriously…. even when Saeed was under house arrest earlier, he was allowed to make speeches attacking India,” said an official.
The latest ban on Saeed’s outfits was announced after Khan chaired a National Security Committee meeting to discuss the recent Pulwama incident and its aftermath.
A statement released after the National Security Committee meeting at the Prime Minister’s office in Islamabad said the members agreed that “the state of Pakistan is not involved in any way, means or form in the said incident” and it was “conceived, planned and executed indigenously”.
The NSC also formally authorised the armed forces “to respond decisively and comprehensively to any aggression or misadventure by India”.
Khan had directed the interior ministry to “immediately accelerate actions on ground” to ensure this.
“If I recall right, he was arrested in December 2001, after we conclusively proved that he was involved in the attack on our Lok Sabha. But he was released in less than three months, and then again arrested and then put under so called House arrest in October,” said one official.