Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed’s column in a leading Pakistani daily underwent baptism of fire, setting off a debate among journalists as to how could the chief of a banned organisation be allowed to write an editorial piece. Saeed was declared a global terrorist in the aftermath of 2008 Mumbai attacks and was under house arrest since November this year.
Saeed’s column on “Illegal aggression of India on East Pakistan” was published in Daily Dunya on Sunday. Apart from the unfounded vitriolic tone against India in the article, there’s a picture of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi juxtaposed with young men holding guns.
The article says that the then Indian PM Indira Gandhi “hatched” a conspiracy to dismember Pakistan in 1971, with Saeed lashing out at Pakistani authorities for not advocating the right of people of Kashmir. In the article, Saeed explained (his opinion) how India interfered in Pakistan’s internal matter and played a role in the creation of Bangladesh.
Throughout the article, Saeed urged the Pak government to take up the issue of persecuted Kashmiri people in India.
Worth mentioning is that Hafiz Saeed’s Milli Muslim League (MML) party was placed on US’s list of foreign terror organisations for its links with Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT). Hafiz is also the chief of Jamat-ud Dawah (JuD) which was declared as a foreign terrorist organisation by the US in June 2014.
The Jamat-u-Dawah is the mainstream organisation or the front organisation of LeT which carried out the 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed 166 people.