The outlawed Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD),the front organisation of the LeT blamed for the Mumbai attack,has resumed its activities,with thousands of its supporters taking part in a rally in Lahore under the banner of a new outfit floated by its leaders.
Thousands of JuD supporters,waving the groups black and white flag and shouting slogans,joined a conference held on Thursday to mark Kashmir Solidarity Day at the Mall,one of Lahores main thoroughfares.
The supporters,who came from various districts of Punjab province,gathered under the banner of Tehrik-e-Azadi-e-Kashmir,a temporary new organisation floated by JuD,Daily Times reported on Friday.
The JuD activists chose the new name during a meeting of leaders from across the country,which was held at Markazul Qadsia at Chauburji in Lahore on Sunday,sources privy to the meeting told the newspaper.
A permanent new name for the JuD is yet to be finalised as the group continues its activism on various issues under different names,an operative said.
A JuD movement to protest recent Israeli attacks on Gaza was carried out in the name of Tehrik-e-Qibla-e-Awwal.
JuD operatives,holding the groups flag,stood at various spots in Lahore on Thursday to welcome supporters arriving from other districts to join the rally and to collect donations. Donors were given receipts issued in the name of JuDs Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF).
The receipts bore the address Department of Revenue,Markazul Qadsia,Chauburji,Lahore. Telephone numbers were also printed on the receipts.
The FIF is a Jamaat-ud-Dawa trust,but it has not been banned, a JuD member said.
Another FIF activist,who identified himself as Hamza,claimed the foundation was not linked to the JuD and had been working for the independence of Kashmir for a long time. But he did not respond when he was asked why he was carrying a JuD flag.
A spokesman for JuD said most of the participants in the rally carried his groups flag but the Tehrik-e-Azadi-e-Kashmir was a joint forum of various political and religious parties.
A statement e-mailed to the Daily Times by the JuD said speakers in Thursdays rally included acting JuD chief Hafiz Abdulssalam Bin Muhammad and political affairs head Hafiz Abdul Rehman Makki.
JuD had written to the United Nations some time last year,claiming it was not associated with the al-Qaeda and Taliban and that the Security Councils sanctions on it were unjustified.
In the letter,JuD described the restrictions imposed by the UN Security Council on the Jamaat and its leaders as being detrimental to the interests of Pakistan and the people who were benefiting from the organisations welfare activities.