Indian Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde on Monday said that Pakistan had never detained the 26/11 mastermind and Laskar-e-Taiba (LeT) chief Hafiz Saeed in the Mumbai attack case as repeatedly claimed by the country at every bilateral forum.
Speaking in Rajya Sabha, the Indian minister said that Hafiz Saeed was detained in connection with some old cases in which he was subsequently given clean chit by Pakistan’s courts. He further said it was revealed when Pakistan shared documents, including FIRs relating to Saeed’s detention, with India during its interior minister Rehman Malik’s visit to New Delhi.
Shinde stated Pakistan’s Interior Minister Rehman Malik appeared to have been “misinformed in the matter.
Giving his statement in the upper house, he observed, “During my talks with him (Malik), he stated that if we desire, he will give us the FIRs and the judgments pertaining to the three occasions when Hafiz Saeed was arrested and let off by courts. When we pursued this matter, they gave us papers pertaining to the detentions of Saeed in 2002 and 2009.”
“From the papers given to us, it is clear that the detentions of Hafiz Saeed in the aforesaid cases were for other reasons and not for his role as a conspirator in the 26\11 Mumbai terror attacks,” he added.
He mentioned how the visiting Pakistani minister had been telling New Delhi time and again that Pakistan had arrested Hafiz Saeed thrice and that on each occasion, he (Saeed) was let off by courts for the lack of evidence.
He noted, “We had been given to understand by the interior minister of Pakistan that Hafiz Saeed was arrested on the charges of being a part of the conspiracy for the 26\11 Mumbai terror attacks.”
He also made it clear that Islamabad had been telling lies to New Delhi over the issue. Officials here believe that it might have been done deliberately as Islamabad does not want to take action against Saeed, who is a key figure in the country’s ISI-LeT nexus for waging proxy war against India.