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The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Friday ordered the federal government to explain why Hafiz Saeed's two organisations, the Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) and its charity wing, the Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation (FIF), had been banned and their accounts frozen.

The order came during hearing of a petition filed by Saeed through senior lawyer A.K. Dogar, in which the JuD chief told the court that the Interior Ministry on Feb 10 had issued a notification to freeze the bank accounts of and take over assets associated with both organisations — the JuD and the FIF — under the Anti-Terrorism (amendment) Ordinance of 2018.

The petitioner alleged that the government of Pakistan had acted under the pressure of foreign powers, including the United States and India. He contended that Pakistan is a sovereign independent state and makes its own laws to govern its citizens.

He added that if there was a conflict between the laws of the land and any provision of the United Nations Security Council Act, 1948, the law of the land shall prevail.

Saeed in his petition had asked the court to declare the impugned notification of the Interior Ministry null and void with regard to taking over the assets of the organisations.

In today's hearing, the federal government was ordered to submit its reply in court by March 29.

Saeed, who in November last year was set free from a 300-day-long house arrest, has been repeatedly accused by the US and India of masterminding the 2008 attacks on the Indian financial capital that killed 166 people.

Saeed was declared a global terrorist by the US and UN over his alleged role in the Mumbai attacks. JuD is considered by the US and India to be a front for LeT, the militant group blamed for the attacks.