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Pak’s Punjab govt allocates millions for Hafiz Saeed’s JuD

Pakistan’s Punjab province government has allocated over Rs 61 million in its budget for fiscal 2013-14 for the largest centre of the Jamaat-ud-Dawa, the parent body of banned terror group LeT that carried out the 2008 Mumbai attacks.

Besides a grant-in-aid of over Rs 61 million for the JuD’s centre known as ‘Markaz-e-Taiba’, the provincial government has allocated Rs 350 million for setting up a ‘Knowledge Park’ at the centre and other development initiatives.

Details of the allocations were presented in budget documents tabled in the Punjab assembly on Monday by the PML-N government led by chief minister Shahbaz Sharif. One document stated: ‘Grant-in-aid to chief administrator Muridkey Markaz (is) Rs 61.35 million’. The JuD’s centre is located at Muridkay on the outskirts of Lahore.

In his budget speech in the assembly, finance minister Mujtaba Shujaur Rehman announced that the provincial government ‘intends to establish a Knowledge Park in Muridkey’. He said the government had allocated Rs 350 million for the park and several other initiatives in Punjab. Shortly after the UN Security Council designated the JuD a front for the LeT in the wake of the Mumbai attacks, the Punjab government took over the centre in Muridkey. At that time too, Punjab was ruled by the PML-N. Since then, the government has allocated money in its annual budget for the administration of the centre in Muridkey.
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