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Pak SC allows 26/11 plotter to walk free
ISLAMABAD, May 26 (Agencies):
Published on 26 May. 2010 11:51 PM IST
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In a verdict that has angered New Delhi, Pakistan’s Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld a lower court decision to release Jamaat-ud-Daawa chief and 26/11 mastermind, Hafiz Saeed, saying the government had failed to marshal sufficient evidence against him.
“The appeals are dismissed,” Justice Nasir-ul-Mulk, head of a three-member bench, said. Pakistan’s federal government and Punjab provincial government had petitioned the court to overturn Lahore High Court’s decision to release Saeed in June 2009 on grounds of insufficient evidence. Defence lawyer, A K Dogar, said the prosecution failed to prove its case.
The Mumbai terror carnage mastermind Hafiz Saeed will walk free, Pakistan’s apex court ruled on Tuesday. “We cannot usurp the right of freedom of a person on mere assumption,” said defence lawyer A K Dogar, quoting the court order.
Prosecutor Saeed Yousuf said authorities didn’t give his team enough material to make a better case against Saeed. “We tried our level best on the basis of the documents available.” New Delhi was incensed by the move and saw it as part of the pattern of denial followed by Islamabad on the 26/11 attack. “We regard Hafiz Saeed as one of the masterminds of the Mumbai attacks and he has openly urged jihad against India,” foreign secretary Nirupama Rao said.
The terror outfit, that operates openly despite Indian protests, was overjoyed. “The decision has sent a clear message that JuD and its chief have nothing to do with terrorism,” said JuD spokesman Yahya Mujahid. He said the decision lifted the stigma from JuD.

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