ISLAMABAD: The government informed the Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday that it had sealed the site for the construction of Jamia Hafsa seminary in the federal capital.
The disclosure came in a report submitted by the office of the Islamabad Capital Territory chief commissioner on the directives of a three-member bench led by Justice Gulzar Ahmed hearing a suo motu case pertaining to the Lal Masjid case. The bench had sought a detailed dossier on the disputed 20 kanal land allotted to the madrassa.
The report said that the mosque is being regulated by the government while the H-11 site, allocated for Jamia Hafa, has been sealed. A khateeb (prayer leader) appointed by the Auqaf department is conducting prayers at the Lal Masjid. “No unauthorised person is allowed to conduct prayers within the premises of the mosque.”
“The site allocated for Jamia Hafsa in Sector H-11 has been sealed because the construction was raised without prior approval of the competent authority and without seeking non-objection certificate (NOC) from the Directorate of Building Control.”
According to the report, around 50 to 60 female students from the Jamia Hafsa’s temporary base at G-7 in Islamabad continue to visit the Lal Masjid. “The district administration and police are handling the situation with restraint since female students are involved,” added the document. “Strict vigilance is being maintained and police deployment has been made around the mosque as well as alternate site in Sector H-11.”
The report further revealed that Maulana Abdul Aziz along with supporters and some 100 female students attempted to enter the mosque on the night between March 19 and 20. Their attempt to restart construction was thwarted by the administration and police.
However, Aziz was evicted peacefully from the Lal Masjid. “Thereafter the prayers are being conducted by khateeb appointed by the Auqaf department under the apex court’s suo motu case number 9 of 2007.”
In February 2002, Aziz was charge-sheeted by the then chief commissioner of ICT. He was removed from services in August 2004 in response to a show cause notice wherein he admitted to issuing a fatwa against army operation in Wana, South Waziristan.
Despite removal, however, Aziz continued leading prayers and delivering Friday sermons.
The violation and practical standoff between the management of Lal Masjid and the law enforcement agencies (LEAs) led to a 10-day long armed operation in January 2007.
In October 2007, the top court ordered temporary appointment of Maulana Abdul Ghaffar as Imam and Maulana Amir Siddiqui as naib Imam.