Pakistan

IHC suspends detention of Mumbai attacks 'mastermind'

ISLAMABAD: Islamabad High Court on Monday suspended detention order of the alleged mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai attacks, Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, government lawyers said, drawing a sharp protest from India.

A court had granted Lakhvi bail on December 18 but after protests from India, the authorities ordered his detention under public order legislation.

Lakhvi’s lawyers challenged the detention on Monday and the Islamabad High Court suspended the order, government lawyer Jehangir Jadoon told AFP.

“The Islamabad High Court took Lakhvi into its custody and granted him conditional bail against surety bonds of one million rupees ($9,943),” Jadoon said.

The suspension can be withdrawn if the government challenges it, Jadoon added.

Lakhvi remains in custody in a high-security jail, as he has throughout the 10 days of wrangling. The paperwork involved in actually getting him released means he is unlikely to walk out of prison soon.

India summoned Pakistan’s envoy to protest after the Islamabad High Court suspended the order on the alleged mastermind of the attacks which killed 166 people.

The Mumbai carnage was blamed on the banned Pakistani militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), and India has long seethed over Islamabad’s failure either to hand over or prosecute those accused of planning and organizing the violence.

A foreign ministry official said Delhi wanted “to register our protest over the court order”.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said the bail order was “a shock to all those who believe in humanity world over”. -AFP

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