Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said on December 29 that India has asked for extradition of Hafiz Saeed from Pakistan. The request was made a few weeks ago, he added.
Saeed, the founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba, has been in jail since 2019 after being convicted for several years in multiple terror finance cases along with some other leaders of the banned Jamaat-ud-Dawa.
There are many facts about Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, the mastermind of the Mumbai 26/11 attacks, that set him apart from other terror chiefs in Pakistan. Unlike the battle worn, gun-toting terrorists wanted for attacks in Afghanistan and India, Saeed identifies himself as a “professor” of Islamic studies, with two Master’s degrees from Lahore University, and a two-year specialisation at the King Saud University in Riyadh, where, he says, he was inspired by the Saudi Grand Mufti into setting up the now-banned Markaz Dawat wal Irshad (MDI) movement.
Saeed traces his origins not to the Pukhtoon areas along the Durand line or from Kashmir along the Line of Control, but to a Gujjar family from Haryana which travelled to Pakistan’s Punjab during Partition, on a journey where Saeed says 36 members of his family were killed in India.
Saeed’s family of clerics have had international exposure: while Saeed went to Saudi Arabia, his brothers Hafiz Hamid, Hafiz Mastodon and Hafiz Hannan ran Islamic centres in and around Boston, until they were deported back to Pakistan for visa violations by the U.S. government in 2007.