The 26 November Air India episode where passenger Shankar Mishra was accused of urinating on an elderly female co-passenger and flashing his penis has taken a new twist with the defendant denying that he peed on the woman. The statement comes just two days after Mishra said that he was not running away from the fact that the act was obscene and revolting, however, he revolted against the criminal charges pressed against him.
Mishra was represented by senior lawyer Ramesh Gupta who called the police investigation a joke and said it was “impossible for Mishra to access her seat in the business class.” He argued before the court that the complainant says that the person who urinated on her was seated in 8A but Mishra was in 8C and even if this was an error on part of the complainant, the police “did not correct this in their remand application", Indian Express reported.
Appearing before Additional Sessions Judge Harjyot Singh Bhalla who disposed of a revision petition filed by the police challenging the dismissal of the police custody remand. The court stated that the police were at liberty to approach the concerned court with a fresh police custody remand raising a series of fresh grounds that were raised for the first time before it and not argued before the Metropolitan Magistrate Anamika who initially heard the remand application, media reports suggest.
As Mishra's lawyer showed a seating plan to the judge to strengthen their arguments further. The judge asked if the accused was suffering from a prostate problem while refuting the allegations that it was impossible for Mishra to urinate at the woman from a distance. “This lady (complainant) is suffering from a medical condition… She urinated on herself and is now blaming Mishra,” Ramesh Gupta told the court.
“He was defamed in front of the whole country and lost his job. Look at the seating pattern, it is impossible for Mishra to have walked over to her seat and urinated on her. It was a business class seat and there was no way to gain entry to her seat. Furthermore, there was another passenger sitting next to her. If Mishra urinated on her, it would have even landed on the passenger who is also a 70-year-old lady. She has made no such complaint,” Gupta told the court.
Responding to Gupta's arguments, ASJ Bhalla said even he has traveled in business class seats and added, “If you can’t cut across doesn’t mean you can’t come around.”
Further, Gupta submitted, "..The woman has a problem of incontinence. She urinated on herself. She is a Kathak dancer, 80 per cent of Kathak dancers have this issue."
Earlier on January 11, the court had declined Mishra's bail plea calling the act of relieving himself upon the woman utterly disgusting and repulsive. The court stated that the “alleged act in itself is sufficient to outrage the modesty of any woman. Egregious conduct of the accused has shocked civic consciousness and needs to be deprecated.”