Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly Haleem Adil Sheikh on Friday claimed that a snake was found in the lock-up where he was detained after his arrest over violence during by-elections in Karachi earlier this week.
Speaking to reporters at an anti-terrorism court (ATC), the PTI leader alleged that the four-foot-long 'black cobra' was deliberately left in his cell under a conspiracy to kill him on the directives of PPP chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari and Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah.
Despite repeated attempts to reach out to several police officials for comment, the police remained tight-lipped about the incident.
Sheikh, who was remanded in judicial custody by the ATC today, was detained on Tuesday in a case related to violence, firing, attempted murder and causing terror during the by-polls in the PS-88 constituency of Malir.
Police claimed to have detained the PTI leader along with four of his supporters — Ramzan, Mehmood, Ghulam Mustafa Hafeez and Abdul Haseeb — and booked them for allegedly resorting to violence, aerial firing, attempted murder, hindering public servants from discharging their duties and causing terror during voting at a polling station in the Memon Goth area on Tuesday.
On Friday, investigation officer Inspector Nazar Muhammad Mangrio produced Sheikh and other suspects before the ATC's administrative judge amid tight security on expiry of their two-day physical remand in police custody.
Special public prosecutor Shahid Mehmood Arain informed the court that the PTI leader and his supporters were taken into custody in connection with a first information report (FIR) registered against them at the Memon Goth police station.
The court was told that further remand of the suspects was required in police custody in order to interrogate them and arrest their alleged absconding accomplices, including Sumera Sheikh and around 40 to 50 unidentified men.
Aran said three repeater guns along with ammunition were seized from the detained suspects, while a vehicle used by them in the offence was yet to be found. Other legal formalities are also required to be fulfilled, the judge was told.
The prosecutor requested the judge to grant an extension in the physical remand of the PTI leader and other suspects.
However, the judge remanded the suspects in judicial custody till February 25 with a direction to the IO to produce them on the next date along with an investigation report.
The judge also issued notices, for the next date, to the IO and the special public prosecutor on an application moved on behalf of Sheikh seeking post-arrest bail.
His defence counsel argued that Sheikh was falsely implicated in the present case despite the fact that he had nothing to do with the offences alleged by police. He pleaded to the judge to grant post-arrest bail to his client.
Two separate cases were lodged under Sections 147 (punishment for rioting), 148 (rioting armed with a deadly weapon), 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object), 170 (impersonating a public servant), 171 (wearing garb or carrying token used by public servant with fraudulent intent), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 114 (abettor present when offence is committed), 324 (attempt to murder), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of fifty rupees) and 337-H (ii) (punishment for hurt by rash or negligent act) of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC) read with Section 7 (punishment for acts of terrorism) of the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997, at the Memon Goth and Gadap City police stations.