A leading Pakistani religious leader has asked authorities to withdraw millions of rupees provided to the Jamaat-ud-Dawah as aid for its “welfare projects” as the group has links with extremists.
Expressing outrage at Thursday’s suicide attack on the Data Darbar shrine in Lahore, Sunni Tehreek leader Haji Hanif Tayyab said banned groups were being allowed to work under new names.
He demanded that the government should make public details about the funding of these groups.
Tayyab, a former federal minister, said: “The JuD has links with extremists and the government has given the group millions of rupees at the behest of the US and this funding must be withdrawn”.
The Punjab government was at the centre of a controversy recently after official documents showed it had provided over Rs 82 million to the group and its allied organisations in the budget for 2009-10.
Officials claimed the funds were meant for JuD’s educational and welfare projects that were taken over by the provincial government in the wake of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.
India has accused the JuD and its chief Hafiz Muhammad Saeed of masterminding the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
Tayyab said the same elements that attacked Rehman Baba’s shrine in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province last year were involved in the suicide bombing of Data Darbar.
He alleged the Punjab government had concealed details of a cache of arms that was recently seized in the Raiwind area of Lahore.
He further alleged that some elements in the electronic media were delivering provocative speeches against mausoleums of saints.