Lahore court orders release of 26/11 Mumbai attacks mastermind Hafiz Saeed

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A judicial review board in Pakistan on Wednesday gave orders to release 26/11 Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed.

On January 31, Saeed and his four aides including Abdullah Ubaid, Abdul Rehman Abid, Malik Zafar Iqbal and Qazi Kashif Hussain were detained by the Pakistan's Punjab government for 90 days under the Anti-Terrorism Act 1997 and the Fourth Schedule of Anti-Terrorism Act 1997.

The provincial government of Pakistan's eastern province of Punjab had asked for an extension to Saeed's detention but the request was turned down by the court, reports quoting prosecutor Sattar Sahil.

The Hafiz Saeed-led Jamaat-ud-Dawa is allegedly the front of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) which carried out the 2008 Mumbai terror attack - where 10 terrorist were responsible for the killing of 166 people in the country's economic capital.

Saeed has denied involvement in the attacks.

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The counsel of the federal government argued that the release of four associates of Saeed had created law and order issues.

Stating that his client is innocent, Saeed's lawyer AK Dogar told the media that "there is no evidence against him, the court can not pronounce him guilty".

Following the decision, Saeed told media that an end to his detention is tantamount to the victory of truth, calling it "a serious blow" to India's demands.

Again in October, the board had allowed a 30-day extension to the detention of Saeed which will expire next week. Subsequently, his house arrest had been extended several times. "It's because of Kashmir that India is after me, but all her efforts have been in vain and Allah has set me free", he said. "It can not face worldwide backlash in the event of releasing the JuD chief", the official source told media. Nine of the attackers were killed by police while lone survivor Ajmal Kasab was caught.

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