Will challenge ban in court: Jamat-ud-Dawah spokesman

December 12th, 2008 - 12:38 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Dec 12 (IANS) Terming the ban on the Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) illegal and a step taken by Pakistan under pressure from India, the organisation’s spokesman said they would challenge the move in court. As all offices of the JuD, said to be a front of the LeT and blamed for the terror attacks in Mumbai, were closed down or sealed, its spokesman Abdullah Muntazir said the allegations made by India against them were false and they would move the high court against the ban.

He also said the organisation had no links to the outlawed Lashker-e-Taiba (LeT).

The government Thursday placed the JuD chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed under house arrest in Lahore for a period of three months after the UN Security Council declared the organisation a terrorist group.

But the JuD spokesman maintained that Saeed had no terror links and said: “Hafiz Saeed is not related with Lashker-e-Taiba as he is the ameer (chief) of the Jamaat-ud-Dawa.”

Muntazir stressed that the Jamaat’s aim was to provide relief to Muslims and not indulge in terrorism.

The decision to seal JuD offices taken at a meeting chaired by President Asif Ali Zardari Thursday evening. Law enforcing agencies also arrested about 20 other JuD leaders, officials said.

Advisor to the prime minister on interior affairs Rehman Malik was quoted as saying by Dawn news channel Thursday that the interior ministry had ordered concerned departments to monitor JuD’s movement and seal the group’s offices across the country.

Police said that JuD’s central office, Jama Al Qadsia, in Lahore was sealed late Thursday, but no arrests were made there.

The State Bank of Pakistan, after receiving instructions from the government, has ordered all commercial banks to freeze JuD accounts and accounts in the name of some of its leaders.

Reports said that US Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte, who met Pakistani officials Thursday, called for immediate action against JuD.

According to information available with JuD offices, they run over 1,000 religious seminaries, 180 English model schools, 23 hospitals and several dispensaries.

JuD deputy chief Abdur Rehman Makki has also denied links to terrorism or running training camps inside Pakistan or elsewhere.

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