Lahore: Mumbai terror attack mastermind and Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed was granted pre-arrest bail on Monday (July 15) by an anti-terrorism court in Pakistan in a case pertaining to the banned outfit's illegal use of land for its seminary. Three others have also been granted bail.

The anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Lahore granted interim bail to Saeed and his aides — Hafiz Masood, Ameer Hamza, and Malik Zafar — until August 31 against surety bonds of Rs 50,000 each.

During the hearing, Saeed's counsel insisted that JuD was not using any piece of land illegally and urged the court to accept bail pleas.

Saeed-led JuD is believed to be a front organisation for the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) which is responsible for carrying out the 2008 Mumbai attacks. The US declared LeT as a foreign terrorist organisation in June 2014.

The US Department of the Treasury has designated Saeed as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist, and the US, since 2012, has offered a $10 million reward for information that brings Saeed to justice.

Under pressure from the international community, Pakistani authorities have launched investigations into matters of the JuD, LeT and the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) regarding their holding and use of trusts to raise funds for terrorism financing.

Meanwhile, the Lahore high court issued notices to the federal government, the Punjab government and the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) regarding a petition filed by Saeed and his seven aides, challenging charges of terror financing and money laundering against them.

A two-member bench of the high court comprising Justice Shehram Sarwar Chaudhry and Justice Mohammad Waheed Khan asked the parties to submit their replies within two weeks.

The Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) of Punjab Police on July 3 registered 23 FIRs against 13 leaders of the JuD including Saeed on the charges of "terror financing" in different cities of Punjab province.