The founding member of the Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, Hafiz Abdul Salam Bhuttavi is Confirmed Deceased, the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) stated. Bhuttavi also served as the deputy advisor to 26/11 mastermind Hafiz Saeed. The date on which the narrative summary about Hafiz Abdul Salam Bhuttavi became available on the Committee website was March 14, 2012, whereas it was updated on December 19, 2023.
The UNSC Statement
“Hafiz Abdul Salam Bhuttavi was a founding member of the Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT) (QDe.118) and deputy to LeT Emir Hafiz Muhammad Saeed (QDi.2.63). Bhuttavi served as the active emir of the Lashkar-e-Tayyiba and Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) on at least two occasions when Saeed was detained according to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). Moreover, he is also responsible for LeT and JuD madrassah (religious school) network.
Bhuttavi was also LeT/JuD pre-eminent scholar, had instructed its leaders and members and issued fatwas authorising LeT and JuD operations. Bhuttavi helped prepare the operatives for the November 2008 terrorist attacks or Taj Attacks in Mumbai, India by delivering lectures on the merits of martyrdom operations. The Mumbai attacks killed over 150 people and injured many more. Bhuttavi is responsible for LeT/JuD madrassah network, the UNSC said in a statement. In mid-2002, Bhuttavi was in charge of establishing an LeT organisational base in Lahore, Pakistan, it further said. He was listed as having connections with Al-Qaeda for supporting activities of Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.
“Hafiz Abdul Salam Bhuttavi was listed on March 14, 2012, pursuant to paragraph 4 of resolution 1989 (2011) as being associated with Al-Qaeda for participating in the financing, planning, facilitating, preparing of perpetrating of acts or activities by, in conjunction with the name of, behalf of, or in support or otherwise supporting acts and activities of the Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, the UNSC said.
Later, Saeed was detained days after the November 2008 attacks and held until June 2009. Following the arrest of Saeed, Bhuttavi handled the groups day to day functions during this period and made independent decisions on behalf of the organisation, Saeed was also detained in May 2002, the UNSC stated.
Cause of Death
On May 29, 2023, Hafiz Abdul Bhuttavi died of cardiac arrest in Muridke, Punjab Province while serving his sentence in Pakistan Jail. “Bhuttavi died of cardiac arrest in Muridke, Punjab Province on May 29, 2023, while he was in the custody of the Government of Pakistan,” the statement said. Yesterday the UNSC updated that the 26/11 terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed is in the custody of Pakistan and serving a 78-year-old imprisonment sentence. As a result of his conviction, in seven terrorist financing cases, Saeed has been serving his sentence since February 12, 2020.