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Imran Khan’s government not extended presidential ordinance

The outfits of Jamaatud Dawa (JUD) and Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF) headed by Pakistan’s denounced terrorist Hafiz Mohammad Saeed are no more on the list of banned outfits following the lapse of the presidential ordinance proscribing them under a UN resolution lapsed.

India considers Hafiz Saeed a most wanted terrorist because of his ties to Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and his involvement in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack, Mumbai train bombings in 2006 and 2001 attack on Parliament. Saeed is listed on NIA most wanted list and India has banned his organizations LeT and JuD.

According to Dawn report published on Saturday, Hafiz Saeed’s counsels Raja Rizwan Abbasi and Sohail Warraich informed Islamabad High Court on Thursday that the presidential ordinance had lapsed and it had never been extended. Imran Khan Government has not extended the ordinance or tabled it in parliament to convert into an act.

The petitioner- Hafiz Saeed had challenged the ordinance under which his organisations had been banned for being on the watch list of the UN Security Council.

Saeed said he was kept in detention in 2009 and 2017 “due to India’s pressure” and the UNSC had passed a resolution against JuD after which the government of Pakistan put it on the watch list. He termed it against the sovereignty of Pakistan that an ordi­na­nce was issued to ban his organization.

Hafiz Saeed contended in the petition that he established JuD in 2002 and cut off all ties with the banned Lashkar-i-Taiba, but India continued to malign JuD for its past association with the banned outfit.

This year in February, Mamnoon Hussian, the former president promulgated an ordinance amending the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997, with regards to proscription of terrorist individuals and organizations to include entities listed by the UNSC-in a move to declare JuD and FIF as proscribed groups.

Dawn further reports that Raja Khalid Mehmood Khan, the deputy attorney generalhas confirmed that the ordinance had lapsed. However, he declined to give a statement on behalf of the interior ministry on the subject.

Subsequently, Justice Farooq  disposed of the petition saying that it became in-fructuous since the ordinance challenged by the petitioner had lapsed. Islamabad High Court has also observed that in case the government renewed this ordinance, Saeed was at liberty to file another petition.

In 2012, the US administration announced a bounty of $ 10 million on Hafiz Saeed, while UK, European Union, Russia and Australia have also banned LeT. India has demanded Saeed be handed over to New Delhi but the two countries don’t have extradition treaty.

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