Jaish-e-Mohammad seminaries shut down across Punjab: Rana Sanaullah

Published: January 15, 2016
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Maulana Masood Azhar, head of Jaish-e-Mohammad, in Islamabad on August 26, 2001. PHOTO: REUTERS

Maulana Masood Azhar, head of Jaish-e-Mohammad, in Islamabad on August 26, 2001. PHOTO: REUTERS

LAHORE: Government has shut down several religious schools run by the Jaish-e-Mohammad militant group accused of masterminding an attack this month on an air base in India, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah said on Friday.

The crackdown in Punjab, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s power base and the headquarters of Jaish-e-Mohammad, follows the arrest this week of several members of the militant group, including its leader, Maulana Masood Azhar, a hardliner and long-time foe of India.

NSAs to devise modalities, terms for Pathankot probe team

Government has said it is clamping down on Azhar’s group while it investigates Indian assertions that the January 2 attack on the Pathankot air base was the work of the Pakistan-based militants.

“Officials of the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) raided the Jamiatul Nur seminary in the Daska area on Thursday and arrested more than a dozen people,” Rana Sanaullah told Reuters. “The seminary has been sealed off and documents and literature have been confiscated from the premises.”

The law minister said several other offices and seminaries run by Jaish-e-Mohammad had also been raided and shut down, with many of its staff arrested. He declined to share further details.

In a TV interview on Thursday, Sanaullah confirmed that Azhar had been taken into “protective custody” and said legal action would be taken against him if his involvement in the Pathankot attack was proved “beyond doubt.”

The January 2 attack on the base in Pathankot was followed by a raid on an Indian consulate in Afghanistan that has also been linked to Jaish-e-Mohammad.

Foreign secretaries meeting: Islamabad, New Delhi reschedule talks

India has demanded that Pakistan take action against the group and on Thursday announced that the two countries would reschedule talks between their foreign secretaries while the investigation into the air base attack was carried out.

Jaish-e-Mohammad militants are blamed for a 2001 attack on India’s parliament that nearly led to a war between the nuclear-armed rivals.

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Reader Comments (5)

  • Jan 15, 2016 - 2:37PM

    High time to curb this menace.Recommend

  • Amir
    Jan 15, 2016 - 6:33PM

    Malik Ishaq type operation a must!Recommend

  • Karrar
    Jan 15, 2016 - 8:58PM

    Rana Sanaullah is caught between the devil and the deep blue sea. It’s not easy to axe his own political supporters and campaigners. Recommend

  • Naeem Khan
    Jan 15, 2016 - 11:33PM

    This group has been sheltered for a long time by the Sharif Brothers. We know that they made deals with religious extremists to spare Punjab from their murderous acts. How could any one forget that Nawaz Sharif wanted to become Ameer-ul-Momineen in his last government, what ever that is. Yes, Punjab has been spared for a long time but the rest of Pakistan has become a killing field for now. We need a government which takes this menace of extremism in the guise of Islam seriously and eradicate it for good from all over Pakistan. Mind it that these extremists could push Pakistan into full fledged wars with other countries which Pakistan does not need. We need peace in our country so we could meet the challenges of 21st century, and God knows that there are tremendous challenges facing the country. Recommend

  • Parvez
    Jan 15, 2016 - 11:58PM

    This mans history is clouded at best…..one wonders as to who he really works for ?Recommend

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