Countrywide crackdown on Jamaat offices continues

December 12th, 2008 - 7:26 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Dec 12 (IANS) Pakistani authorities continued their countrywide crackdown on the Jamaat-ud-Dawah, a front organisation for the outlawed terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) that is blamed by India for the Mumbai attacks, a day after it was banned by the government. Several of its offices, including in Punjab, were sealed and many people taken into custody.The interior ministry had Thursday banned JuD, arrested its leaders and frozen its assets, after the UN listed it as a terror organisation.

The chief of JuD, Hafiz Saeed, and other key leaders have been put under house arrest and the police sealed its offices and nabbed many of its activists in several cities of Punjab, Geo TV reported.

Quoting police sources, the channel said that the central office of JuD, Jamia Alqadsia, in Lahore had been sealed.

In Pak Pattan in Punjab province, three people were arrested by police after two JuD centres were sealed - Ayesha Siddiqua and Mubarak Masjid.

Meanwhile, 17 people were arrested during raids in several districts, including Bhawalpur, Okara, Kasur, Sheikhupura, Gujranwala and Gujrat. The police also sealed the offices of the outfit in these areas.

Two of the outfit’s offices were sealed in Islamabad and there were unconfirmed reports of some arrests.

In Pakistani Kashmir, where the Jamaat-ud-Dawah is particularly active, its local leader was placed under house arrest and four workers detained.

In Sindh province, more than 40 people were detained and around 30 offices sealed as well as four hospitals belonging to the outfit, Aaj TV reported.

In the North West Frontier Province (NWFP), authorities arrested 150 people linked to the outfit and closed 42 offices.

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Ahmad Mukhtar said Friday that Pakistan would have been declared a terrorist country “had we not accepted the ban on Jamaat-ud-Dawah”.

Speaking to media persons, the defence minister said that Pakistan launched the operation against banned organisations in accordance with the United Nations resolution.

He said US authorities are satisfied with the measures taken by Pakistan. “War on terror is in Pakistan’s own interest and we are determined,” he said.

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