HYDERABAD, July 16: The Central Prison authorities here on Tuesday received a letter threatening the entire staff with dire consequences if any harm came to any of the four convicts in the Daniel Pearl kidnapping and murder case.
The author of the letter, drafted in Urdu, identified himself only as ‘Changez Khan - the commander’ and warned the jail authorities: “If any harm came to the commander Omer Sheikh or other Mujahideen, the entire jail staff, particularly the superintendent will face the consequences.”
Clearly referring to the other convicts, Salman Saqib, Fahad Nasim and Sheikh Adil, by the term ‘Mujahideen’ the sender of the letter said that the jail officials would be hanged at the same gallows and at the same ward if Omer Sheikh was hanged.
A jail official, requesting anonymity, said that the letter was received with the usual mail and posted from the GPO, Hyderabad.
It has been sent to the DPO, Hyderabad, for necessary action, the official said.
Similar threats, reportedly addressed to the prosecution in the case, had prompted the Sindh High Court to move the original venue (Central Prison Karachi) of the trial to Hyderabad on April 30.
Meanwhile, it is learnt that the prison authorities are trying to convince the Home Department to declare the B-class cell, where Omer Sheikh had been kept before being handed down capital punishment, as condemned ward.
The justification for such a move has been given as overcrowdedness in the condemned ward, overall security and an easy access to the B-class cells. Sheikh has already been transferred to the B-class cell for security reasons one day after being moved to the condemned ward known as ‘Mansoor Ward’.
According to a jail official, the prison authorities have decided to keep all the four convicts in B-class cells.