'Extremely Upset' India Summons Pak High Commissioner After Court's Decision To Release Mumbai Mastermind

13/03/2015 11:33 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
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Zaki-ur-Rahman Lakhvi, the main suspect of the Mumbai terror attacks in 2008, raises his fist after his court appearance in Islamabad, Pakistan, Thursday, Jan. 1, 2015. Lakhvi was sent to judicial remand in an abduction case by a court, official said. (AP Photo/B.K. Bangash)

New Delhi — An “extremely upset” India on Friday summoned Pakistan's High Commissioner to India, Abdul Basit, to register New Delhi's strong protest against the Islamabad High Court's decision to release Mumbai terror attack mastermind Zakir-ur-Rehman Lakhvi from prison.

According to reports, High Commissioner Basit is expected to go in for a meeting with officials of India's External Affairs Ministry.

Minister of State for Home Affairs, Kiren Rijiju, criticized the Islamabad High Court's decision to release Mumbai terror attack mastermind Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, saying there should be no discrimination in terms of showing the character of terrorists.

lakhvi pakistan

Rijiju also blamed the Pakistagencies for not presenting the 'incriminating evidences' against Lakhvi properly in the court.

"It is the responsibility of the Pakistan Government to ensure that all the legal measures are taken so that he doesn't get out of jail. All the overwhelming evidences, which clearly shows Lakhvi's role and conspiracy in the bomb attack in Mumbai has not been properly presented in the Pakistani court by the Pakistani agencies. This is a case which is worrying us. The Pakistani agencies should present all the incriminating evidences in the court of law," Rijiju told the media.

"There should be no discrimination in terms of showing the character of terrorists. Terrorist cannot be a bad or a good terrorist . We are concerned and we would like to see that the Pakistan Government takes things seriously and Pakistani agencies present all the evidences available before the Pakistani courts," he added.

Leaders of the Congress Party also criticized Pakistan, saying that it was not serious about dealing with the menace of terrorism.

The matter has also been "raised at high levels" in Pakistan, PTI quoted official sources as saying.

"India is extremely upset with the verdict and as a first step lodged a strong protest with the Pakistan government," the sources said.

India's reaction came within hours of the Islamabad High Court declaring as void the detention order of the LeT operations commander Lakhvi, who was also the 2008 Mumbai terror attack mastermind.

Lakhvi and six others - Abdul Wajid, Mazhar Iqbal, Hamad Amin Sadiq, Shahid Jameel Riaz, Jamil Ahmed and Younis Anjum - have been charged with planning and executing the Mumbai attacks in November, 2008 that left 166 people dead.

Justice Noorul Haq of the Islamabad High Court accepted 55-year-old Lakhvi's appeal filed against his third time detention orders and ordered his immediate release, Dawn reported.

The High Court had earlier reserved its decision over the application.

Lakhvi, believed to be a close relative of LeT founder and Jamat-Ud Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed, was arrested in December 2008 and was indicted along with the six others on November 25, 2009 in connection with the 26/11 attack case.

The trial has been underway since 2009. He has been detained at Adiala jail for the last five years or so.

Lakhvi's lawyer Rizwan Abbas, putting forth the arguments pertaining to the case, said that the statements were all in Hindi.

Lakhvi's detention orders were issued by the Islamabad deputy commissioner under the Maintenance of Public Order on December 18, 2014 immediately after he was granted post-arrest bail by an anti-terrorism court.

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