Sonal Bhargava | Prabhat Bandhulya
The Bombay High Court granted anticipatory relief to a railway travelling ticket examiner (TTE) accused of urinating near a passenger's seat in the middle of the night, on the condition that he deposit money for the installation of a water cooler at Thane railway station. Single-judge Bench Justice Bharati Dangre remarked that the accused had shown regret and chosen on his own to donate 25,000 to the Railways so that the money might be used to build the water cooler facility. It can be said that a ticket checker, a custodian of the railway, has engaged in an unpardonable act. The act may not require custody, but going by his conduct, the custodian is expected to not behave in an obnoxious way by urinating at the door especially when he was in an inebriated state,” Justice Dangre noted. The Court decided that the accused deserved protection and ordered that if the applicant was detained, he be freed on bail after depositing the agreed-upon amount. The factual matrix stated that a female traveller heard water dripping near her seat during a long-distance train journey and discovered that someone was urinating near her sleeper. Her fellow passengers witnessed the guy zipping his pants while she was calling for assistance. One of them even took a video of the incident. It was then discovered that the perpetrator was a TTE. An FIR was filed with the Karjat railway police based on the passenger's complaint. Witnesses' statements were also collected, and the footage was reviewed. "The video was shown, the applicants appeared to be drunk, and the still images reveal he was apologising to the guy sitting at his feet repenting," Justice Dangre said as he accepted his petition for anticipatory bail.