A provincial review board in Pakistan on Thursday extended the house arrest of Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed by 30 days, reported Dawn. His detention period under the Maintenance of Public Order Ordinance was scheduled to expire on October 26.
Law officer Abdul Sattar Sahil, who represented the Punjab Home Department, said Saeed’s release might cause security problems, reported The Express Tribune. However the board, headed by Justice Yawar Ali of the Lahore High Court, rejected the government’s request to extend the house arrest of four other leaders of the organisation.
On January 31, Saeed – the alleged mastermind behind the attacks in Mumbai in 2008 – and his four aides were detained by Pakistan’s Punjab government for 90 days under the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1997. They have been under house arrest since after multiple extensions.
Separately, a bench of the High Court adjourned the hearing of the petition of the JuD leaders challenging their detention. A lawyer representing the government sought time, saying that Attorney General of Pakistan Ashtar Ausaf was out of the country. Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi said the matter would be taken up again on October 24, according to Dawn.
Saeed heads the Jamaat-ud-Dawa Islamic charity, widely viewed as a front for the Lashkar-e-Taiba, the group behind the 2008 Mumbai attacks. The United Nations Security Council labelled the Jamaat-ud-Dawa leader a terrorist front in 2008. The United States offers a $10 million bounty for Saeed.