FATF grey list: 148 properties of JuD, FIF confiscated in Punjab

All assets of both outfits taken over in AJK and G-B, interior ministry tells Senate panel

Qadeer Tanoli March 08, 2018
The committee chairman, Rehman Malik, passed directives that all measures that the government had taken so far in this connection should be made public through the media. PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE

ISLAMABAD: All properties of the Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and its charity arm, the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF), have been confiscated in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and Gilgit-Baltistan (G-B), while so far its 148 properties/assets have also been taken away in Punjab during the ongoing crackdown against the two organisations.

This was told to a Senate panel by the interior secretary, Arshad Mirza, during a meeting held at the Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services (PIPS) Hall, on Thursday. The meeting was presided over by Senator Rehman Malik.

Mirza told the Senate Committee on Interior that the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) had confiscated three immovable assets of the two organisations, including hospitals and dispensaries. He said the Pakistan Red Crescent had been directed to take over seven ambulances associated with them.

Previously, the committee had sought briefing by the Ministry of Interior and Foreign Affairs on what measures the government had taken in view of Pakistan's placement on ‘grey list’ of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

The interior secretary informed the panel in his briefing that the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), the JuD and the FIF were on the United Nations Security Council’s (UNSC) sanction list as per its resolution number 1267. Therefore, Pakistan was supposed to impose sanctions against the three outfits, he said.

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The Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) was also amended through a presidential order for taking action against the three organisations that had been declared proscribed by the UNSC, he added.

The panel members were also informed that in consultation with multiple stakeholders a checklist was prepared in this connection and circulated amongst the stakeholders for taking action against the JuD and the FIF.

In response to a question of Senator Chaudhry Tanvir Khan that who was funding these organisations, the official said: “Let this matter be taken up tomorrow [on Friday] when the panel’s next meeting would be held.”

Regarding the action against the proscribed organizations, he said the finance ministry was the lead agency. While highlighting other measures against these outfits, the interior secretary said the passports of the persons associated with them had been cancelled, a move that had barred them from flying abroad.

Moreover, their weapons’ licenses had also been cancelled and they had been stopped from raising funds as well, he added.

Mirza said a meeting would be held next week in the finance ministry in which representatives of the Financial Action Task Force would also participate. During this meeting, he said a reporting mechanism would be designed to satisfy the FATF demands regarding these organisations.

In a FATF meeting in Paris, he added, Pakistan was given three months to satisfy it with regard to measures taken by the country against the organisations declared proscribed by the UNSC.
Besides having international obligations Pakistan also had some internal obligations, the official said.

However, senators in the parliamentary panel strongly criticised the policy of the successive governments about countering terrorism and radicalisation and urged the government that it was time to look inward and do more for a respectable standing in the comity of nations.

Senator Shahi Syed said Pakistan got a bad name for fighting the CIA-sponsored Jihad. He said it was incumbent on Ulema-e-Haq (the true scholars) to confess that a mistake had been committed in this connection.

He said Maulana Sami-ul-Haq had been openly claiming that Taliban were like his children. But still two grants of 300 million and 270 million rupees were given to his religious seminary Darul Uloom Haqqania by the K-P government.

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“If you want to do reforms for madrasas then it should not only be specific to Darul Uloom Haqqania. It should be for all religious seminaries,” he further stated.

Minister of State for Interior Tallal Chaudry said that matters needed to be reviewed if the international community was not ready to buy Pakistan’s narrative, though the country massively suffered during the war against terror. “You can’t fool the world. It’s better to get along with the rest of the world,” Chaudhry stated.

Senator Jehanzeb Jamaldini said Pakistan committed mistakes one after the other in the first and second round of the war in Afghanistan. He said no proscribed organisation should be allowed to work with a different name. “We are still in a state of denial; not ready to identify the mistakes. We term the banned outfits as Jihadi organisations,” he stated.

The committee chairman, Rehman Malik, passed directives that all measures that the government had taken so far in this connection should be made public through the media.

The panel was also briefed by the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) on Pakistanis who drowned in Libya, while the Sindh police informed the committee about the measures taken for the security of Chinese nationals.

A top K-P police official informed the panel about the investigations regarding incidents of target killing in DI Khan. While sharing the details on these incidents, he revealed that terrorists were largely using money transfer service ‘Easy Paisa’ to send small amounts to each other.

The committee chairman said he was glad to report at the end of the session that the Senate Standing Committee on Interior had done more legislations than any other committee of the House and it was not possible without the support of all members. He hoped that they all would continue the same in future.

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