Saeed files petition for Pak govt to defend him in US court

M Zulqernain

Lahore, Jan 12 (PTI) Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief HafizMohammad Saeed today filed a petition in a Pakistani courtasking it to direct the federal government to defend him in alawsuit filed against him in a US court by relatives of twoAmerican Jews killed in the Mumbai attacks.

Saeed, the founder of the banned Lashker-e-Taiba,said in his petition filed in the Lahore High Court that thegovernment should appoint a counsel to defend him in the courtin Brooklyn in the US.

India has accused Saeed of masterminding the 2008terrorist attacks on Mumbai that killed 166 people, includingsix Americans.

The court in Brooklyn has summoned current ISI chiefLt Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha and his predecessor Nadeem Taj andLashker-e-Taiba leaders, including Saeed, to appear before itin connection with the suit filed by relatives of RabbiGavriel Holtzberg and his wife, who were among those killedduring the attacks.

Saeed noted in his petition that the federalgovernment had announced it would defend ISI officials in theUS lawsuit and said he had the "constitutional right" to seeksimilar legal aid as a citizen of Pakistan.

A K Dogar, who has served as Saeed''s counsel inseveral cases, is representing the JuD in the Lahore HighCourt. Officials said the court is yet to set a date forhearing Saeed''s petition.

JuD spokesman Yahya Mujahid claimed the Lahore HighCourt had cleared Saeed of charges related to the Mumbaiattacks and the US court had no right to summon him.

"In spite of all the dossiers provided by India,nothing has been established against Saeed," Mujahid told PTI.


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