Air India urination case accused disagrees with airline's 4-month ban
The lawyer of Shankar Mishra, the Mumbai man who reportedly urinated on a co-passenger on Air India's New York-Delhi flight in November, claimed that he disagreed with the airline's move to impose a four-month ban on his client. Akshat Bajpai, Mishra's lawyer, also revealed that his client is in the process of filing a plea against it.
Why does this story matter?
- Air India's official four-month ban on Mishra on Thursday comes nearly two months after the alleged incident.
- Notably, the FIR was filed after the victim wrote to the airline's parent company, Tata Sons' chairman, N Chandrasekaran.
- On January 4, the FIR in the incident was filed almost 40 days after the November 26 happening.
Committee incorrectly considered there was 9B seat on flight: Bajpai
Mishra's lawyer also said that the internal inquiry committee's order hinges on their wrong understanding of the aircraft's layout. Bajpai added that the committee incorrectly considered that there was a 9B seat in the business class, as per reports in the news outlet India Today. But there are only 9A and 9C business class seats on the flight and no 9B, he added.
Committee essentially manufactured possibility: Mishra's lawyer
"Based on these unfounded and clearly incorrect conjectures, the committee has essentially manufactured a possibility that the accused had committed the alleged act," the accused's lawyer said. "This finding is particularly surprising considering that there were two aviation experts on the committee," he added. On January 6, Mishra was arrested and is currently in jail after a Delhi court rejected his bail appeal.
Inquiry committee's ruling hinges upon incorrect understanding: Defense
The statement also said: "We would particularly like to point that the Internal Inquiry Committee's ruling hinges upon their incorrect understanding of the layout of the aircraft. We maintain the innocence of the accused and have full faith in the judicial system of the country."
Air India confirms Shankar Mishra's 4-month ban
On Thursday, the airline's spokesperson said: "The independent three-member internal committee under the chairmanship of the former district judge has concluded that Shankar Mishra is covered under the definition of 'unruly passenger'." "Air India has shared a copy of the internal committee report with the Directorate General of Civil Aviation and will also be intimating other airlines operating in the country," added the spokesperson.
What is DGCA's Civil Aviation Requirement?
According to DGCA's Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR), an unruly passenger can be defined as someone who fails to follow the laws of conduct on board an aircraft or at an airport or fails to follow the rules of the airport staff or cabin crew members. Thus, it troubles the disciple and good order of an airport or on board a flight.
Air India grounds pilot, cabin crew of New York-Delhi flight
Amid the ongoing outrage over the incident, the airline grounded four cabin crew members and the pilot of the November 26 New York-Delhi flight. Air India also sent a show-cause notice to the flight crew after the victim woman's complaint made headlines. Furthermore, the airline has admitted that the case could have been handled more efficiently.