India handed over another dossier to Pakistan on Friday to build a case against Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed, saying there was “cogent and convincing evidence” pointing Saeed’s role in the Mumbai terror attacks.
Jamaat-ud-Dawa is a front for terror outfit Lashkar-e-Tayyeba founded by Saeed.
The dossier, handed over by Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao to Pakistani High Commissioner Shahid Malik, is the sixth set of documents passed on to Islamabad to enable it to conduct investigations into the Mumbai attacks.
Within hours, Pakistani Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi told Associated Press of Pakistan that Islamabad would examine the new evidence as and when it reaches the country.
But Qureshi made it a point to emphasis that the dossiers received earlier had no significant evidence. “But, if there is evidence in the fresh dossier, Pakistan will examine it. It is a matter of trial by court that needs evidence,” he added.
Saeed is considered the mastermind of the 26/11 attacks that left over 160 people, including 26 foreign citizens, dead. India wants Pakistan to investigate and prosecute him.
“The evidence on record together with the evidence gathered in course of further investigation (in Pakistan) should certainly lead to prosecution of Hafiz Saeed,” an official in the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) associated with
compiling the dossiers said. The official didn’t wish to be identified as he is not authorised to speak to the media.
Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram had made a similar point after sending a seven-page response to clarifications from Pakistan three weeks ago.
“The evidence provided in three dossiers is, in our view, sufficient to investigate Saeed’s role,” he had said.
Officials said Islamabad was trying to confuse issues in demanding “concrete evidence” against Saeed that would withstand judicial scrutiny. Saeed was detained in wake of the Mumbai attacks but released in June for want of evidence.