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Pak steps up crackdown on terror outfits; takes over 182 madrassas; India News and Travel Times Provides India-centric and other News and Features - Search News

Pak steps up crackdown on terror outfits; takes over 182 madrassas

March 7, 2019
ISLAMABAD: Continuing its crackdown on terror outfits operating from its soil following intense global pressure for action, Pakistani Government on Thursday took control of 182 religious schools (madrassas) and detained over 100 more people.

"The Provincial Governments have taken in their control management and administration of 182 seminaries (madaris)", Pakistan's interior Ministry said in a statement. "Law enforcement agencies have taken 121 people under preventive detention as of today." it said.

The interior ministry said other institutions from different groups had also been taken over. They included 34 schools or colleges, 163 dispenseries, 184 ambulances, five hospitals and eight offices.

At the same time, the Ministry said that the action was not in response to Delhi's call after the massacre of 40 CRPF jawans in a suicide bomb attack last month in Pulwama, Kashmir, and the subsequent hostilities, but part of an action plan ( National Action Plan on Terrorism) the Government had adopted earlier. However, there has been intense pressure on Pakistan from the international community for action agaist terror groups, especially as the US, UK and France approached the UN for sanction against Pakistan.

Nonetheless, Pakistan today finds itself in a dilemma as madrassas or religious schools are the only available platform for the education of the masses, but they were being put to serve the interests of terror outfits, who ran them, to train the youth into militants. They were also being used as camouflage for the terrorist organisations.

On Tuesday Pakistan began the crackdown on the terror outfits by detaining Jaish- e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar's son Hammad Azhar and brother Abdul Rauf Asghar who masterminded the Pathankot airbase attack in 2016, and 42 others of the banned groups.

Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Khan Afridi had told a press conference that Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed's Jamaat-ud-Dawa and Falah-e-Insaniyat Foundation were banned and their assets were placed under Government control. The Ministry issued a fresh list of banned organisations.

Masood Azhar and Hafiz Saeed had been detained several times in the past in connection with the Mumbai attack in 2008, Parliament attack in 2001 and Pathankot attack in 2016 and on other occasions but were every time released by the courts.

The Minister said the Government is following a National Action Plan on terrorism drafted after the terror attack on an army school in Peshawar in December 2014 in which 150 people, including children, were killed.

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