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ISLAMABAD: A senior government official has conceded that the process of confiscating the assets of Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) and Falah-i-Insaniyat Foun­da­tion (FIF) is still to be completed.

Interior Secretary Arshad Mirza was speaking at a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Interior on Thursday. The meeting discussed the implication of Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) decision to put Pakistan on the grey list from June and the steps being taken to address global concerns.

A list of JuD and FIF assets has been prepared by the Intelligence Bureau, through what the interior secretary described as “geo-mapping of properties and assets of banned organisations”.

In January both the organisations were moved from the watch list to the list of proscribed organisations after the government introduced a presidential ordinance amending the Anti-Terrorism Act to include UN-designated terrorist groups and individuals in the domestic listing.

The legislation paved the way for the confiscation of JuD and FIF assets.

So far the process of the confiscation of the two organisations’ assets has been completed in Islamabad and Gilgit-Baltistan where they had a few properties.

Meanwhile, according to the figures presented before the committee, 148 properties of the two entities linked to Hafiz Saeed had been taken over in nine out of 10 divisions of Punjab. There was no word on the action taken against the groups in AJK, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.

The assets of the medical wings of the two groups were to be taken over by Pakistan Red Crescent Society. The PRCS, it is said, has made arrangements, but the transfer could not be taken place because of some unexplained reasons.

Mr Mirza told the committee that the finance ministry would hold a meeting next week to deliberate on the actions that Pakistan would take to overcome the shortcomings pointed out by the global counter-illicit financing watchdog.

Senator Rehman Malik asked about the implementation on the National Action Plan regarding madressah reforms. He emphasised that the government should immediately implement its proposals regarding madressah reforms and terror financing.

Mr Malik said Pakistan has suffered more than any other country in the war against terrorism and the world instead of appreciating its role was putting it on the grey list. He suspected Indian involvement behind such moves against Pakistan.

He asked the government to constitute a task force comprising Federal Investigation Agency, Inter-Services Intelligence, Military Intelligence, Nacta (National Counter Terrorism Authority) and the State Bank of Pakistan to deal with the suspected terror financing and money laundering. The National Action Plan needed to be revisited and international requirements should be made part of it, he added.

Published in Dawn, March 9th, 2018