With mounting pressure from the Trump administration, the Pakistani government on Monday finally put India’s most-wanted terrorist and JuD chief Hafiz Saeed and four others under detention under an Anti-Terrorism Act.
According to reports, the government's crackdown comes amid pressure from the Donald Trump administration to act against terror. The Trump administration had recently put a ban on immigrants from seven Muslim majority nations that are 'most identifiable with dangerous terrorism taking place in their country' - Syria, Somalia, Yemen, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Sudan.
Reince Priebus, the White House Chief of Staff, has said that countries like Pakistan that are 'having problems similar to those seven nations', can be added to the list in future.
Reports suggest that the Pakistani government was under pressure from the Trump administration to ban the militant outfit or face visa ban. This has prompted the Pakistan government to put him under house arrest.
The crackdown came hours after Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar said that Islamabad was keeping a tight vigil on the activities of the outfit since 2010.
“We have been deliberating on the fate of the JuD for quite some time now. We are tacking the outfit’s activities since 2010-11. The matter was under consideration. Also it is listed under the UNSC,” he told reporters.
Saeed was at Masjid-e-Qudsia Chauburji in Lahore when police descended there to implement the order of detention issued by Punjab Province's Interior Ministry in pursuance to a directive from the Federal Interior Ministry on January 27.
“He is at Masjid-e-Qudsia Chauburji and a heavy contingent of police has surrounded the JuD headquarters," JuD official Ahmed Nadeem, who was present at the premises of the outfit, said.
"The commanding police officer told us that he has with him the house arrest order of the JuD chief issued by the Punjab Home Department," Nadeem added.
Police informed that will be shifted from Masjid Al-Qudsia Chauburji to his Jauhar Town residence where he will be placed under house arrest on the order of the government.
The provincial authorities have also started to remove the banners of JuD from the roads of Lahore.
Nadeem claimed that the Pakistani government had been under pressure from the United States to take action against Saeed or face sanctions. "This government has buckled under the pressure," he said.
Three days back, Punjab's Ministry of Interior had included names of Saeed and four others -- Abdullah Ubaid, Zafar Iqbal, Abdur Rehman Abid and Qazi Kashif Niaz -- in the Watch List as per UNSC 1267 Sanctions and ordered their preventive detention. Ubaid, Iqbal, Abid and Niaz were also taken into preventive custody.
Meanwhile, Saeed has said that he will contest the government’s order in the law of court.
The 26/11 mastermind blamed the ‘growing friendship’ between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Donald Trump for his house arrest.
Saeed released a video in which he claimed that Trump was putting pressure to arrest him since he wanted to become friends with Modi.
JuD is the front for the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terror outfit which is responsible for numerous terror attacks in India, including the Mumbai terror strike of November 26,2008, which was masterminded by Saeed.