ISLAMABAD/ KARACHI: Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) has decided to challenge United States (US) announcement of placing a bounty on the group’s chief, Hafiz Mohammad Saeed and Lashkar-e-Taiba co-founder Hafiz Abdul Rahman Makki, in international courts. The group has initiated legal consultations in this regard.
Earlier while speaking on Geo News, a defiant Saeed said that, “only God can end my life and not the United States.”
Responding to a question regarding a possible unilateral raid by the US to eliminate him, declared as one of the most wanted terrorists, he said that he is not concerned about death since only God had control over his life and death and he will die according to His will as and when his time comes.
Dismissing the recent US announcement of declaring him a wanted terrorist, with a $10 million bounty placed on his head for information leading to his arrest, as propaganda, Saeed said its purpose was to hinder the cause of the Difa-e-Pakistan movement by tarnishing his image in Pakistan.
Vowing to continue his movement, Saeed said, “We will continue to stand up for our rights and justice.”
As a concluding remark, an eloquent Saeed humbly ‘advised’ the US to stop its oppression and pull out its troops from Afghanistan, while curtailing its influence in Pakistan. “Live in peace and let us live in peace,” adding that US’ intervention in the region was causing an economic crisis.
He requested the politicians in the country to rise above party politics and unite in defending Pakistan. "This is not about me, its about Pakistan".
India has an agenda against me: Saeed
Responding to another question regarding India’s persistent pressure on Pakistan to bring Saeed to book for his alleged involvement in the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, he said that India has always maintained a hostile stance against him because he spoke about the Kashmir cause, the water issue and India’s alleged intervention in Balochistan, vis-à-vis fueling the separatist movement. Therefore, India considered him as a hindrance in their ulterior motives.
Talking about the 26/11 Mumbai attack investigation, Saeed said that India had sent at least four dossiers against him, 300 to 400 pages each, but could not prove his involvement in the attacks.
“A Lahore High Court full bench had acquitted me, saying that I was not involved in the Mumbai attack, along with clearing me of all terrorism charges. JuD is not a banned outfit.”
He added that India was not ready to acknowledge the existence of Pakistan, much less a decision by a Pakistani court of law.
The JuD chief challenged India to face charges levied against him in any court of law in the world.
Earlier on Tuesday, JuD spokesperson Yahya Mujahid said the US had offered a $10 million bounty for the chief of Jamaatud Dawa, a charity wing of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), due to the Difa-e-Pakistan Council’s (DPC) strong resolve against the reopening of Nato supply routes through Pakistan, drone strikes in the country’s tribal badlands and trade with India.
Mujahid went on to claim that the move by the US was politically motivated and it was evident who the US government was trying to gratify.
“Yes, the Americans wanted to please India and they did it.”
The Indian government had welcomed the US bounty for Saeed with a sense of vindication.
“It reflects the commitment of India and the United States to bring the perpetrators of the Mumbai terrorist attack to justice,” India's foreign ministry said in a statement.
Meanwhile, prominent religious parties in the country, including Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ), Jamiat-e-Ulema Islam- Samiul Haq (JUI-S), Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), Dawat Ahl-e-Hadees, Majlis Ahrar-e-Islam, International Khatam-e-Nabuwat and Jamiat-e-Ahl-e-Hadees, had also criticised the US' move.