The Lahore High Court has issued notices to the federal and Punjab governments to file a reply by April 25 regarding Jamat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed’s petition seeking protection following the US announcement of a $10 million bounty on him.
LHC Chief Justice Sheikh Azmat Saeed asked the deputy attorney-general and Punjab advocate-general on Wednesday to assist the court on whether a country had the power to announce bounty on the heads of citizens of another independent country.
Saeed and his brother-in-law Abdul Rehman Makki had filed the petition through Advocate AK Dogar, who submitted before the court that the JuD is a charitable organisation and had no links with Lashkar-e-Taiba, as alleged by India.
The US had also announced a $3 million bounty on Makki, who was present in court on behalf of Saeed on Wednesday.
Dogar asked the court to direct the government to protect the petitioners and make arrangements for their security under article 9 of the Constitution.
The counsel also sought an order against any possible adverse action against the petitioners or their families by the Pakistani government or any agency, without prior permission from a high court.
He further prayed that the government be directed to seek withdrawal of the bounty by the US. Dogar said that the foreign office of Pakistan had made it clear to US that concrete evidence should be provided against the petitioners.
He added that Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani, while addressing a joint sitting of parliament, had also said that the Saeed issue was an internal matter of Pakistan.