The Jamaat-ud-Dawa and other outfits in Pakistan have threatened to launch countrywide protests on February 5 unless their chief Hafiz Saeed, who was placed under house arrest on Monday, is released immediately. The Difai Council of Pakistan claimed action was taken against the 26/11 Mumbai attacks mastermind only to please India, Dawn reported.
“Only a few days ago, a public gathering of the DCP has designated 2017 for the liberation of Kashmir, which had irked India. The house arrest of Hafiz Saeed will not, in any way, affect the movement,” DCP Chairman Maulana Samiul Haq said, adding that the move was “without any reason or justification” as courts had released Saeed. The DCP is an umbrella coalition of more than 40 political and religious parties in Pakistan.
Another group, the Jamaat-e-Islami, said Saeed had only worked to “expose the true Indian face and brutalities in the Valley”. “India is trying to exploit weaknesses of the new American president Donald Trump, who, in turn, is putting pressure on Pakistan,” said Liaquat Baloch, a member of the group. He added that the JuD chief’s house arrest proved that the Nawaz Sharif government in Pakistan had bowed to pressure from the United States like the Pervez Musharraf administration.
Pakistan’s Federal Commerce Minister Khurram Dastgir had said that an FIR will be filed against Saeed, the details of which would be released soon. The JuD chief and 38 others have been included in the country’s Exit Control List, which bars them from leaving the country.
Militant commander Syed Salahuddin, who leads the United Jihad Council, said the government’s “painful and cowardly” move sent “a negative and disappointing message” to the people of Kashmir and proved “Pakistan’s weak role in the ongoing freedom struggle” of Kashmiris, PTI reported.
Since Saeed’s house arrest, rallies have been held in a number of regions in Pakistan, including Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Lower Dir and Mansehra. JuD members have held demonstrations, holding up placards and chanting anti-India and anti-US slogans, according to Dawn.