IndiGo passenger sent to Tihar Jail

Slaps air hostess, creates ruckus on flight

A Mumbai-Delhi IndiGo flight passenger, who has been arrested for turning violent and creating ruckus mid-air, was remanded to judicial custody for a day on Thursday.

Mursalim Shaikh, 41, a used-car dealer from Maharashtra’s Thane district, was arrested late on Wednesday for allegedly abusing and slapping an air hostess when she intervened to end his argument with a co-passenger.

He was travelling on Indigo Airlines flight 6E 196, which landed at Indira Gandhi International Airport’s Terminal 1 at 7.30 pm.

Metropolitan magistrate Pankaj Sharma sent Mursalim to Tihar Jail till Friday and directed Delhi Police to verify the address of a person who volunteered to stand as a surety to Mursalim if he gets bail.

According to J S Deswal, deputy commissioner of police (Indira Gandhi International Airport), Mursalim was held under sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code.

“He was remanded to judicial custody for a day on Thursday. Our questioning has revealed that he did not attempt to hijack the plane, but it was a spontaneous act and not a premeditated one. The accused is said to be mentally unstable,” Deswal said.

Another police official said the incident took place after a man objected to Mursalim’s posture of sitting in the aircraft. “The man felt uncomfortable so he objected, but Mursalim started an argument with him,” the official said.

An air hostess intervened to stop the argument, but Mursalim slapped her.
Mursalim apparently became more violent after which he also tried to move forward in the plane.

“He was abusing and shouting at people. He was trying to intimidate them,” the official added.

He was, however, restrained by the crew and fellow passengers till the aircraft landed.

Meanwhile, the pilot-in-command informed IGI Airport authorities and requested for security personnel on arrival of the flight. After the aircraft landed, Mursalim was handed over to Central Industrial Security Force.

He was later handed over to police, and a case was registered on the basis of the statement by the air hostess.

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