Wednesday, February 01, 2023

Air India urination case: Shankar Mishra gets bail as court takes note of ‘contradictions’

Taking note that a witness did not support the claim made by the victim, a Delhi court Tuesday granted bail to Shankar Mishra, who has been accused of urinating on a fellow co-passenger while inebriated onboard an Air India flight between New York and Delhi in November last year.

Additional Sessions Judge Harjyot Singh Bhalla granted bail to Mishra after going through the statement of the passenger seated next to the complainant to state that the witness has “not supported the claim made by the victim in her statement, which, of course, cannot also be completely brushed aside at his stage… The claim has, therefore, become more of a matter of trial”.

Mishra’s lawyer Akshat Bajpai said, “The court has agreed with the main arguments and the statement of witnesses.”

The court admitted Mishra’s bail on furnishing a bail bond/ surety bond of Rs 1 lakh with one surety of the like amount. He has been asked not to influence witnesses in the case, tamper with evidence or leave the country.

On the prosecution’s opposition that Mishra was a flight risk, the court said that the FIR was registered after a delay of one month and five days of the incident. It said that following this, a notice was sent to Mishra to join the probe, and not joining the probe at such a short notice “cannot show that Mishra was trying to flee from judicial process”.

“It is but natural for anyone accused of a cognizable offence to be in a state of panic and seek an opportunity to be able to exercise the right for seeking anticipatory bail or any other remedy that may be available,” the court said.

01/02/23 Anand Mohan J/Indian Express

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