PALGHAR (Maharashtra): In a blatant defence of his son Shankar Mishra’s shocking act of urinating on an elderly woman on board an Air India flight from New York to Delhi, Shyam Mishra, father of the accused, said on camera, “Perhaps he was being blackmailed”.
Shyam Mishra claimed that the case against his son is “false”. “She (victim) had demanded payment and it was made. Don’t know what happened next. Must have demanded something that perhaps wasn’t met that upset her. Perhaps there was blackmailing, there must be something”, he said.
Shyam Mishra said his son slept in the flight and was questioned by the airline staff after he woke up. “False case. My son hadn’t slept for 30-35 hours. After dinner, he might’ve consumed the drink given by the crew and then slept. From what I understand, he was questioned by airline staff after he woke up”, he said.
Shyam Mishra claimed that his son could not have committed such an offence. “I don’t think he would do it. She (the victim) is a 72-year-old woman, she is like his mother. He (the accused, his son) is a 34-year-old man. How can he do it? He is married and has an 18-year-old daughter”, he said.
Asked about his son’s whereabouts, Shyam Mishra said he is not aware. “We are also trying to talk to him. I don’t know (where he is)… I just want facts should be told, what is being presented is far from truth”, he claimed.
On Friday, the counsel for Shankar Mishra said “the complaint was a malicious after-thought”. Advocate Ishanee Sharma said, “If you go through WhatsApp messages between the accused and the woman, it clearly shows that the accused has gotten her clothes and bags cleaned.”
Sharma said that the victim returned the money. “She accepted compensation and not used words like ‘I don’t need it’ or ‘This won’t do’ in any message. Suddenly, there was an after-thought. I want to call it a malicious after-thought, where they returned the money and said, ‘this isn’t done and don’t keep any contact with us’,” the lawyer said.
She said that there are a lot of loopholes in the case. “This complaint thing was an after-thought. There’s no eyewitness account. Nobody came out to say that they have seen the incident happening. How is that possible? The plane had more people besides the two people in question. There are a lot of loopholes”, said Sharma.
Air India on Wednesday imposed a 30-day flying ban on Shankar Mishra and the Delhi Police has registered a FIR over the shocking incident. Air India said as a first step, it has banned the passenger for 30 days, the maximum it is permitted to unilaterally do so.
The airline said it has taken very serious note of the incident that caused extreme distress to a passenger. The woman passenger had also complained about her “traumatic experience” on Grievance Air Sewa portal. The airline set up an internal panel to probe whether there were lapses on part of the crew in addressing the situation that caused distress to the woman.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has also launched an investigation into the incident. The National Commission for Women also took cognisance of the incident on board the Air India flight. (ANI)