Updated: October 28, 2020 2:17:02 am
The Centre has designated 18 key operatives and leaders of groups such as Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Hizb-ul-Mujahideen (HuM), Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), Indian Mujahideen (IM) and members of the Dawood Ibrahim gang as individual terrorists under the recently-amended Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
Among those in the list are key 26/11 conspirators Sajid Mir and Yusuf Muzammil, alias Muzammil Butt; IC 814 case accused and JeM leaders Ibrahim Athar and Yusuf Azhar; JeM chief Masood Azhar’s brother Rauf Asghar, key conspirator in Parliament attack, Pathankot airbase attack and Pulwama CRPF convoy attack cases; IM founders Riyaz and Iqbal Bhatkal; HuM chief Syed Salauddin; and Dawood’s close aides Chhota Shakeel and Anees Shaikh, besides 1993 Mumbai blasts accused Tiger Memon, among others. All of them are said to be in Pakistan currently.
“Reinforcing the commitment of strengthening national security and its policy of zero tolerance to terrorism, the Modi Government today has declared… eighteen more individuals as designated terrorists under the provisions of UAPA Act 1967 (as amended in 2019) and included their names in the Fourth Schedule of the said Act,” the MHA said in a statement.
Abdur Rehman Makki, brother-in-law of LeT chief Hafiz Saeed, is also among the 18 named. Makki is said to head LeT’s political affairs and has led the terror outfit’s foreign relations. Another inclusion is that of Shahid Mehmood, alias Shahid Mehmood Rehmatullah. Mehmood is the Pakistan-based deputy chief of proscribed organisation Falah-i-lnsaniyat Foundation (FIF), a front of the LeT. The NIA is already probing a case of funding of terror activities in India by FIF in the name of religious donations. Farhatullah Ghori, alias Abu Sufiyan, accused of involvement in the 2002 Akshardham temple attack case and the suicide attack on the Task Force office in Hyderabad in 2005, is also on the list. Shahid Latif, alias Chota Shahid Bhai, the Pakistan-based ‘commander’ of JeM’s Sialkot sector who is allegedly involved in launching JeM terrorists into India, has also been included.
What 2019 amendment means
The Centre had amended UAPA, 1967, in August 2019 to include the provision of designating an individual as terrorist. Before this amendment, only organisations could be designated as terrorist outfits. In first orders under the new Act, the government had, in September 2019, declared LeT’s Hafiz Saeed and Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, JeM’s Masood Azhar and Dawood Ibrahim as terrorists. Nine leaders of Khalistan movement were later designated as terrorists.
He is said to be also involved in planning, facilitation and execution of terror attacks in India.
Among HuM leaders in the list, apart from Salauddin, are Ghulam Nabi Khan and Zafar Hussain Bhat. While Khan is said to be the “deputy supreme” of HuM in Pakistan, Bhat handles the outfit’s financial affairs and is responsible for sending funds for HM operatives in Kashmir Valley.
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