A 19-year-old man who escaped from Byculla Jail in May was tracked down in Karnataka by the police on Saturday. The accused, Asif Shaikh, had been arrested by the railway police at Bandra station on May 3 for allegedly stealing a cellphone, the police said. He was remanded in judicial custody and lodged at Byculla Jail. However, when jail authorities did a headcount of inmates on May 5, they found Shaikh missing and searched his barracks and the jail premises. Investigations revealed that Shaikh had scaled a bamboo scaffolding erected on the walls of the jail to plaster the surface and CCTV camera footage showed him exiting the jail premises, the police said.
After a case was registered at Nagpada police station for fleeing from lawful custody, the police began tracking his movements. A team of police officials eventually tracked Shaikh to Bidar district in Karnataka, where he was apprehended on Saturday. The police said that he had been living there under a different identity – going by the name of Shoaib Shaikh.
He was brought to Mumbai on Sunday and produced in court. A magistrate remanded him in judicial custody until July 7. An officer at Nagpada police station said that when he was arrested in May, Shaikh had given the railway police a false name and a fake address in a slum in Goregaon, concealing his native home in Bidar district.