Air India urination case: Act revolting but not meant to outrage complainant’s modesty, says accused
Shankar Mishra made the argument while seeking bail from a Delhi court, which rejected his plea.
The Air India passenger who had urinated on a woman on a flight from New York to Delhi told a Delhi court on Wednesday that his act was not driven by sexual desire nor aimed at outraging the complainant’s modesty, PTI reported.
“Nobody should have to go through something like that,” Shankar Mishra told the court. “It was revolting. I feel bad for the poor lady. It was appalling. However, was the unzipping aimed at sexual desire? No. Was any of this act aimed at outraging her modesty? No.”
Mishra’s lawyer, Manu Sharma, made the argument while seeking bail for his client before Metropolitan Magistrate Komal Garg. Later in the day, the court denied him bail.
According to the first information report filed by the Delhi Police, Mishra on November 26 had walked to the woman’s seat in the business class section in a drunken state, unzipped his pants and urinated on her.
The FIR stated that after the incident, the Air India crew brought Mishra to the woman’s seat and forced her to negotiate with him. The woman in a letter to Tata Group Chairperson Natarajan Chandrasekaran accused the crew of being “deeply unprofessional” while dealing with a “very traumatic situation”.
Mishra was arrested by the Delhi Police from Bengaluru on January 7. The court had sent him to 14-day judicial remand, denying police his custody.
During Wednesday’s hearing, the counsel representing the complainant opposed Mishra’s bail plea, arguing that he could influence the investigation. The counsel also alleged that her client was receiving threats from Mishra’s father, reported PTI.
“I’m regularly receiving messages, threatening me,” the woman’s counsel told the court. “Accused’s father sent me a message and said ‘karma will hit you’ and then deleted the message. They are sending me messages and deleting them. This needs to stop...Air India instead of separating the accused and complainant, tried to mediate the crime.”
The counsel added that showed no remorse about the incident, reported The Indian Express.
“Intoxication can never be a defence,” the counsel said. “It is not that he was given liquor without his will. Assault does not require physical contact. The heinous act has been committed.”
The Delhi Police also opposed Mishra’s application, saying that he could influence the complainant if released on bail, PTI reported.
“Mishra’s mother and sister tried to contact the complainant,” the police told the court. “Many witnesses are to be examined, including the captain and cabin crew.”