Days after a powerful explosion took place near UN-designated terrorist Hafiz Saeed’s residence in Lahore, a Pakistani journalist has revealed that Saeed was indeed at home when the bomb went off and was the target of the attack. Speaking at a Dawn news programme ‘Zara Hut Kay’, journalist Amjad Saeed Sahani said: “Hafiz Saeed is a high-value target and we have come to know that the prison department monitors his location. The jail superintendent has the power to declare any location as a sub-jail.”
“According to our information, Hafiz Saeed was present at his residence. His family denies this but Saeed was indeed the target of this attack,” said Sahani.
Hafiz Muhammad Saeed is the chief of the dreaded Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT) terrorist organisation. As an overall leader, Saeed played a key role in LeT’s operational and fundraising activities. He is the Amir or leader of the Jamaat-ud-Dawa.
Saeed, designated as a global terrorist by the UN and the US, which has a USD 10 million bounty on his head, has been wanted by India for years for masterminding the Mumbai 2008 terror attack that left 161 people dead.
The LeT founder has been sentenced twice for jail terms exceeding 10 years but is not being held in prison, and continues to run terror activities from his Lahore home.
Last week, a powerful blast in the Pakistani city’s Johar Town near his home killed three people and injured 24 others, including a police constable.
Following the blast, a car mechanic was also taken into custody on Saturday for his involvement in the blast. Sources said intelligence agencies arrested the technician for modifying the interiors of the car that was used in the blast.
“He has been shifted to an unknown location,” Geo News quoted a source as saying.
A man parking a suspicious vehicle that was possibly used to carry out the blast was caught on closed-circuit television (CCTV), the footage of which has been obtained by ARY News, the media outlet said on Wednesday.
Citing initial investigations, a senior police official told Dawn on condition of anonymity that about 15 kg of explosives had been planted in a car that was stolen from Gujranwala and parked near the residence of Hafiz Saeed in Board of Revenue Housing Society, Johar Town.
A rickshaw and motorcycles parked nearby were completely destroyed by the blast, the police said.
The site of the blast was cordoned off with a bomb disposal squad collecting evidence.
Hafiz Saeed’s residence remained safe, but many other houses and shops falling within a 100 square feet radius of the blast site were damaged.
The 71-year-old terrorist has been serving a jail sentence at the Kot Lakhpat Jail Lahore for his conviction in terror financing cases. Saeed was sentenced to 15 years and six months imprisonment by an anti-terrorism court (ATC) in December last year.
(With inputs from ANI)