A top officer of Pakistan’s Punjab government has been sacked for allowing the Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed’s Jamat-ud-Dawah (JuD) to collect hides of sacrificial animals despite a ban. Deputy Commissioner Toba Tek Singh Asim Sapra has been sacked from his post after an inquiry team constituted by Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif found him guilty of issuing NoC to the JuD to collect the sacrificial hides during Eid days in the district which is 200-km from Lahore.
The Punjab Home Department had issued an order directing police to stop banned religious organizations including JuD and Falah-e-Insaniat (FIF) of Saeed and Maulana Massod Azhar’s Jaish-i-Mohammad from collecting hides during Eid days early this month. “DC Asim Sapra had allegedly issued NoC to the JuD to collect hides without observing that there had been an official ban on it (to collect hides during Eid days),” a Punjab government official told PTI today on anonymity. He said Sapra was given a chance to defend himself before the inquiry committee but he failed to justify his act. He said the government received a complaint against Sapra that he issued NoC to the JuD for collection of hides showing that he is a “JuD sympathizer” and facilitated it in the district which was under his control. “Sapra told the inquiry team that he inadvertently issued the NoC to JuD as he overlooked the order of the home department in this regard,” the official said, adding the chief minister has sacked Sapra in the light of the findings of the inquiry team.
Last week Lahore police had arrested over 20 activists of FIF and JeM illegally collecting hides during Eid days in the city. Police had also dismantled over 40 hide collection centres of the FIF in the city and stopped the mobile operation as well. The hide collection is done in a very organised manner in Pakistan. Banned militant organisations fundraise millions of dollars on the occasion of Eid al-Adha by selling the hides of sacrificial animals after collecting them from individuals.