Despite the fact that Pakistan is a major Non-NATO ally of the United States in the war on terror, global community sees Islamabad’s efforts to clamp down on terror networks and personnel with suspicion. The world is not convinced that Islamabad is doing enough in this regard. Islamabad’s contradictory policies on eliminating such outfits and curtailing terror financing give credence to the narrative that Pakistan harbours terrorists.

While sticking to its commitments to eliminate terror groups and individuals involved in subversive activities, Pakistani authorities banned Hafiz Saeed’s organisation Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD). However, with the recent orders issued by the Lahore High Court (LHC) to the provincial and federal governments for obstructing the philanthropic activities of JuD exemplifies the contradictions in the policies of the state and its institutions over issues that are of international concerns. Clearly, LHC fails to consider that JuD is one such organisation for which Pakistan has been blamed as a terrorist harbouring country.

While LHC has given a date for further hearing on the request of the federal government’s attorney, the court needs to be cognizant of the fact that the state has to fulfil its obligations that international law puts on it. Whether it’s unconstitutional or not to bar one from carrying out philanthropic activities, the constitution also places limitations on actions of an individual or any organisation if activities of such person or group harm Pakistan in any manner.

The government’s action against Hafiz Saeed’s network stems from its obligation that it needed to fulfil after Saeed’s organisation was included in a list of terrorist that United Nations Security Council (UNSC) issued earlier this year. The government will face immense pressure from the international community if it fails to convince the court that the ban on Saeed’s organisation is essential to comply with its global commitment to fighting against terrorism. Pakistan will be on FATF grey list in June. The possibility of Pakistan being blacklisted cannot be ruled out if the court removes the ban on his organisation.