Haleem Adil Sheikh sent to jail on judicial remand by ATC

'We are sending you to jail and you will be safe there,' says the court

KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court (ATC) in Karachi has sent Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) leader and the Leader of the Opposition in the Sindh Assembly Haleem Adil Sheikh to jail on judicial remand till February 25 on Friday.

The ATC heard a case related to aerial firing and creating a disturbance in by-elections in Karachi’s PS-88 constituency on February 16.

Haleem Adil Sheikh and other accused have been produced before the court by jail officials today.

The prosecutor told the court that the accused had attempted to intervene in the polling process during the PS-88 by-elections. The prosecutor also sought remand of Haleem Adil till March 3.

The counsels representing the accused apprised the ATC judge regarding the recovery of a poisonous snake from the room of Sheikh.

The lawyer argued that the case was the result of political revenge but not a terrorism case. He said that firing was resorted to on the vehicle of Haleem Adil Sheikh.

The PTI leader’s spokesperson Muhammad Ali Baloch said earlier a snake came out of Sheikh’s room and was reported by an employee carrying breakfast for Sheikh.

Baloch added that the Sindh government will be responsible if anything happened to the PTI leader.

During the hearing, the opposition leader said that the snake was deliberately left in his room and it was a conspiracy to murder him.

Haleem Adil Sheikh said the police later killed the snake and made its video, which is sent to AIG Ghulam Nabi.

He said in this city the chief justice himself recovered wine from the room of Sharjeel Memon and the Sindh government converted this wine into honey. However, now these people would say it was not a snake but a rope.

He maintained we are not afraid of these dirty tactics.

He added that a day earlier, Sumair Sheikh was arrested under the same political vendetta. He informed that Sumair is the son of former advocate general Mir Muhammad Sheikh, who had told Benazir Bhutto that Abdullah Shah had gotten Murtaza Bhutto killed.

He remarked that the PTI workers are united and no member would vote to thieves in Senate election.

To this, the judge remarked that he should not deliver such political statements outside the courtroom. “We are sending you to jail and you will be safe there.”

Later, the court sent Sheikh to jail on judicial remand till February 25. The ATC ordered authorities to produce the accused again on February 25.

Moreover, the court issued notice to the prosecutor regarding the bail plea of Sheikh and sought arguments on February 22.

Aleem Adil Sheikh, Naeem Adil Sheikh and Jansher Junejo talking to media outside Malir court condemned adding sections of anti-terrorism act to the case of Haleem Adil and said that the Sindh police is being politicized.

After the hearing, it emerged that Sindh Governor Imran Ismail on Friday apprised Prime Minister Imran Khan regarding the registration of a terrorism case against Opposition Leader in Sindh Assembly Sheikh.

According to sources, the governor Sindh also informed Prime Minister Imran about the details of the snake which was recovered from the prison cell of the opposition leader.

To this effect, PTI lawmakers demanded the DIG to launch a probe into the matter and take action against those found guilty of negligence.

A day earlier, PTI leader and Sindh Assembly Member Khurram Sher Zaman – who had been confident of Sheikh receiving bail during today’s hearing – had led a delegation to register a case against firing on the opposition leader and assaulting PTI workers during the by-election.

Khurram Sher Zaman, while talking to media, had stated that the people to be held accountable should be Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah or Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, a PTI press release said. He asserted that the provincial police should be answerable to the people, not the rulers.

“We request the chief justice to take notice of the retaliatory actions of the PPP,” he had said to media persons.

“No one is being allowed to meet Haleem Adil Sheikh. If anything happens to Haleem Adil Sheikh or any worker, Murad Ali Shah and Bilawal Zardari will be responsible for it,” he had lamented.

“We ask Prime Minister Imran Khan how long the people of Sindh will be left at the mercy of PPP. Now it is the time for the people of Sindh to get rid of PPP,” Zaman had asserted.

While the opposition leader’s status is on par with a provincial minister, Zaman had claimed that PPP “thugs” tried to torture Haleem Adil Sheikh and opened fire on his car. He had maintained that the police had acted impartially throughout the incident and that the arrests of PTI workers and officials from Sindh had been going on since yesterday.

The PTI leader had asserted that superintendent (SP) Rao Aslam has refused to register a case, terming the move an “utter injustice”.

Karachi police on Tuesday had arrested PTI leader Sheikh on charges of violating the Election Commission of Pakistan’s (ECP) rules during a by-election to a provincial assembly seat in Malir.

The ECP had ordered his expulsion from Karachi’s constituency of PS-88 Malir, where by-polls are taking place for a seat of the Sindh Assembly.

The case against the Sindh opposition leader was filed at the Memon Goth police station in District Malir. Anti-terror and other provisions have been included in the case registered against Sheikh.

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