Hours after arrest of Capt (r) Safdar over hooliganism at Quaid-e-Azam’s mausoleum and his subsequent release on bail by a judicial magistrate, the opposition termed the episode a ‘planned conspiracy’ to create ‘divisions’ within the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM). PML-N Vice-President Maryam Nawaz and JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman claimed that Safdar was arrested with the aim of dividing the opposition’s anti-government alliance, with Maryam saying she never thought ‘for even a moment’ that the arrest was carried out at the Sindh government’s behest. She said that the PDM leadership are not ‘kids’, adding that she knew that the PPP did not have a hand in Safdar’s arrest. “You can be a fool, but we are not kids and we understand everything and what game is being played and what the aim is. I did not think for a second that PPP was behind it [arrest],” she told a press conference. Speaking about the arrest, Maryam said that she and her husband slept after Fajr as they had come late from the PDM rally. “At around 6:15 am, someone started banging our door. We were sleeping,” said Maryam, adding that she felt that the noise could be due to construction activities happening nearby. “I heard the same noise after one or two minutes. I told Safdar that someone is banging on our door,” she said, adding that when her husband opened the door, police officials outside told him that they were here to arrest him. The PML-N leader said that her husband told police that he will change and come out. She added that they heard that someone was breaking down the room’s door again. “They broke the security latch and came inside the room. I was in bed and Safdar said do not come inside, I will come outside. I’m taking my medicine,” she said, adding that police, however, ignored his request and arrested him anyway. Maryam said that there was nothing wrong with the ‘vote ko izzat do’ slogan, adding that the same words had been used by the Quaid-e-Azam. “Vote ko izzat do is not a slogan which disrespects anyone. I know very well who is afraid of vote ko izzat do and afraid of Madar-e-Millat Zindabad (long live the mother of the nation),” said Maryam. Addressing the press conference, PDM Chairman Fazlur Rehman claimed that the inspector general of Sindh police was held hostage and forced to register the case against Safdar. He said that the arrest is a planned conspiracy in Karachi to create ‘divisions’. He added that the presence of PPP leadership in the press conference has failed the conspiracy. However, PTI leader and Maritime Affairs Minister Ali Zaidi denied reports that Sindh inspector general of police (IGP) was “kidnapped and forced to register” FIR against Safdar. Taking to Twitter, Zaidi said, “M. Zubair selling nonsense narrative that CM Sindh told him IG was kidnapped & forced to register FIR. If this is true then CM Sindh must fire IG Sindh or resign himself as his orders were followed.” PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari also condemned the arrest, promising Maryam Nawaz that the Sindh government is holding an inquiry into the matter. Speaking to Maryam over the telephone, the PPP chairman expressed solidarity with the PML-N leader and said that the way Safdar was arrested is against the traditions of Sindh. He said that the Sindh government was not informed about the arrest and has asked the Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah to investigate the arrest and take all measures to secure the PML-N leader’s release. “PML-N leaders visited Mazar-e-Quaid and the incident took place there. What happened at the shrine should not have happened,” Sindh Information Minister Nasir Shah said during a news conference. He said that PTI leaders had approached different police stations to file a case against the PML-N leadership. He added that police had initially dismissed the complaint. “Afterwards, the Qauid-e-Azam board gave an application to the police. The police, in turn, asked the board to forward the request to the magistrate. “During this time, a man told the police that Captain Safdar had threatened to kill him,” said Shah following which police registered an FIR and started its investigations. Hours after his arrest, Safdar was granted bail by a judicial magistrate against surety bonds of Rs100,000 in Karachi. The Judicial Magistrate East approved Captain (rr) Safdar’s bail in a case related to “violating the sanctity of Mazar-e-Quaid”, and instructed him to submit surety bonds worth Rs100,000.