Pak court orders release of 26/11 mastermind Hafiz Saeed

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Ministry of External Affairs has blamed Pakistan of harbouring terrorism on their soil.

According to agency reports on Wednesday, JuD chief Hafiz Saeed will soon walk free after a Pakistani judicial body ordered his release from house arrest, in a setback to India's efforts to bring to justice the perpetrators of the 2008 Mumbai terror attack.

Lawyers of the Jammu Bar Association (JBA) staged protests against Pakistan here on Thursday against the release of Hafiz Saeed, mastermind of the 26/11 terror attack in Mumbai.

The US is aware of media reports that a Pakistani court ordered the release of Lashkar-e-Taiba leader from house arrest, a state department spokesperson told PTI when asked about the decision of the Judicial Review Board of Punjab province which refused to extend his detention.

India has accused Hafiz Saeed of masterminding the Mumbai attack in November 2008 and the 2001 Parliament attack in Delhi.

He said the government's lawyers had repeatedly argued in court that Saeed was a threat to public safety and that his release could lead to global penalties for Pakistan for not moving against terrorism financing.

"We plead the board not to order the release of Saeed as Pakistan may face worldwide sanctions", the Pakistan government official had requested the judicial board.

In June 2014, Saeed's Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) was declared a foreign terrorist organization by the US.

Mumbai had witnessed multiple terror attacks on November 26 in 2008 which had resulted in 166 deaths injuring several others.

The MEA spokesperson also added, "It is evident that Pakistan has not changed its policy of shielding and supporting non state actors, and its true face is visible for all to see".

"It is the responsibility of the Pakistani government to fulfil its worldwide obligations and take credible and effective action against terrorists like Hafiz Saeed".

In another development, Kumar said India has responded positively to an offer made by Pakistan to allow the wife of an alleged Indian spy jailed by Islamabad to visit him in prison.

The Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief was set to be released from house arrest tonight after the Lahore High Court's release order. An official said that the activities of JuD are "already under scanner and action in regard was taken many times in the past but this time we will do so again".

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