Malik lied on Sayeed, Shinde tells Rajya Sabha

Pakistan still going soft on 26/11 mastermind

Malik lied on Sayeed, Shinde tells Rajya Sabha

Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik’s controversial three day visit has ended in a bluff. Proscribed Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) mentor Hafiz Saeed was not arrested by the Islamabad authorities on charges of 26/11 Mumbai attack contrary to statements made by Rehman Malik, Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde informed Parliament on Monday.

After reaching New Delhi on Friday evening for his three-day visit, Malik had repeatedly told journalists that Saeed was arrested thrice by their officials but he was let off by the courts due to lack of evidence supplied by the Indian government.

“Mr Rehman Malik has been telling us repeatedly that Hafiz Saeed was arrested thrice and that on each occasion he was let off by the courts due to lack of evidence. We had been given to understand Hafiz Saeed was arrested on charges of being involved in the 26/11 attacks,” Shinde told the Rajya Sabha. The home minister, however, pointed out, “From the papers given to us, it is clear that the detentions of Hafiz Saeed in the aforesaid cases were for other reasons and not for his role as a conspirator in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks. Therefore, I can only say that Mr Rehman Malik appears to have been misinformed in the matter.”

But, the minister did not explain why the UPA government was waiting for Malik to inform about Pakistan’s lack of movement against Hafiz Saeed. What was the Indian High Commission in Islamabad and intelligence agencies doing since the court orders are available to the public? So far authorities in Islamabad have arrested 7 people who are facing trial in a Rawalpindi court.

Shinde told the House that, “I specially mentioned (to Malik) our investigation showed that Hafiz Saeed was one of the masterminds and that Pakistan is yet to take effective action against him.”

Seeking clarifications from Shinde, Deputy Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ravi Shankar Prasad wondered why the home minister did not mention Malik’s response in his statement and why he did not object when the Pakistani minister raised the issue of Babri Masjid demolition, which is India’s internal matter.

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