How Pakistan ensured that Hafiz Saeed’s JuD is removed from the list of banned terror outfits

The Imran Khan government neither extended the ordinance banning terrorist outfits nor did it table it before the Parliament to convert it into an Act.

The mastermind of 26/11 Mumbai attacks and UN-designated terrorist, Hafiz Saeed’s Jamat-ul-Dawa and Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF) are no longer in the list of banned outfits in Pakistan as per reports.

Former President of Pakistan, Mamnoon Hussain had passed a presidential ordinance in February that amended the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997 and banned the individuals and terrorist organisations listed by the UN Security Council. JuD and FIF were proscribed under this ordinance. The present Pakistan Tehereek-i-Insaf (PTI) government led by Imran Khan neither tabled the bill before the Parliament to convert it into an Act nor extended it. As a result, the ordinance has lapsed. However, this does not at all come as a surprise as Imran Khan is known to have a soft corner for terrorists. He had suggested that Pakistani Taliban should be allowed to ‘open an office’ in Pakistan to facilitate peace talks.

Hafiz Saeed had filed a petition before the Islamabad High Court challenging the ordinance. His counsel had informed the judge about the lapse of the ordinance due to the failure of the government to extend it or table it before the Parliament for converting it into an Act. Subsequently, the judge said that Saeed’s plea was no longer effective as the ordinance was not extended by the government.

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This incident exposes the shallow promises of Pakistan of maintaining peace with its neighbors. On one hand, Pakistan plays a victim of terrorism before the international community while on the other hand, it continues to allow its land to be used for terrorism and to create safe havens for terrorists. This apparent deliberate inaction of Pakistan to curb terrorist activities on its land has also led to the  USA canceling 300 billion dollars in aid to it.

Pakistan has given refuge to terrorists like Osama bin Laden who was killed by the American forces in Pakistan’s Abbottabad in operation Neptune Spear. The mastermind of the Mumbai serial bomb blasts in 1993, Dawood Ibrahim, is also reported to be staying in Pakistan.

The UNSC sanctions list includes the names of terror outfits like Al-Qaeda, Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, JuD, FIF and Lashkar-e-Taiba among many others.

it is notable here that Pakistan’s new PM Imran Khan has developed a habit of attempting to malign India over the suspension of bilateral talks and the Kashmir issue. Recently, the ministry of external affairs in India had issued a statement asking Imran Khan to focus on internal issues of his own country first before advising India.

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