Islamabad [Pakistan], Feb. 1 : Pakistan Interior Ministry has included the names of Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief and 26/11 Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed and 37 others, who are affiliated with JuD or Lashkar-e-Taiba, on the Exit Control List, two days after he was placed under house arrest.
The Ministry has sent letters to all the provincial governments and the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA).
The move, which bars the 38 individuals from leaving Pakistan, comes two days after authorities placed Saeed under house arrest along with four other individuals, namely Abdullah Ubaid, Zafar Iqbal, Abdur Rehman Abid and Qazi Kashif Niaz.
"Placed Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) and Jamaat-Ud-Dawa (JUD) on the Watch List as per UNSC 1267 Sanctions and have listed these organisations in the Second Schedule of the ATA 1997 (as amended)," Geo TV quoted a notification issued by the Ministry of Interior.
"Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, Abdullah Ubaid, Zafar Iqbal, Abdur Rehman Abid and Qazi Kashif Niaz are reportedly active members of the aforementioned organisations within the meaning of Section 11EEE(1) of the ATA 1997 (as amended).
As such, they must be placed under preventive detention," said the ministry. The detention order surfaced hours after Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar hinted that a crackdown was imminent.
He told reporters in Islamabad on Monday that, given the group had been under observation for years and was blacklisted internationally, Pakistan was "under obligation to take some action".
Saeed, however, told reporters that he would challenge his detention in court. "My detention orders are unlawful and we will challenge them in the court," Saeed told reporters before he was led away by the police.
However, India reacted to this cautiously stating that only a ' credible crackdown' on the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack mastermind and other terrorist organisations will prove the 'sincerity' of the Asian neighbours.
External Affairs Ministry official spokesperson Vikas Swarup said that the government has seen the reports on Pakistan Interior Ministry order, placing the JuD and the Falah-e-Insaniyet Foundation under the watch-list and also the notification under which the foundation has been included in the second schedule of their anti-terror legislation under UN Security Council Resolution number 1267.
"We have also noted that Hafiz Saeed and four others have been placed under preventive detention. Exercises such as yesterday's orders against Hafiz Saeed and others have been carried out by Pakistan in the past also," Swarup said.
Pakistani authorities, facing mounting pressure from the Trump administration, placed Saeed and four others under detention, on Monday night.