Bombay High Court Grants Bail To 1 Accused In Pushpak Express Robbery & Sexual Assault Case

Bombay High Court Grants Bail To 1 Accused In Pushpak Express Robbery & Sexual Assault Case

The court observed that there the CCTV footage showed that Shaikh neither entered the train with seven accused, nor jumped off with them when the train was nearing Kasara railway station.

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Thursday, March 21, 2024, 07:26 PM IST
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Bombay High Court | Wikipedia

The Bombay high court recently granted bail to Arshad Ali Chhotehussain Shaikh, one of the accused in the 2021 Pushpak Express robbery and sexual assault case. The court observed that there the CCTV footage showed that Shaikh neither entered the train with seven accused, nor jumped off with them when the train was nearing Kasara railway station.

Details of case 

On October 8, 2021, between 7.00 to 7.30 pm between Igatpuri and Kasara railway stations, the applicant and seven other accused allegedly entered Bogie No.D-2 of Pushpak Express which was on its way to Mumbai. They robbed the passengers armed with knives, blades and iron fighters. A couple resisted the robbery and hence the accused assaulted the husband and two of the accused, Prakash alias Pakya and Rahul alias Rahulya, sexually assaulted the wife in the presence of other passengers.

Seven accused jumped off the train when the train was entering Kasara station. Later, Shaikh emerged from the train’s toilet wearing a saffron T-shirt with full sleeves. Suspicions arose among fellow passengers, leading to Shaikh’s arrest when the train’s reached Kasara Railway Station. Shaikh was detained, assaulted, and subsequently handed over to the Kalyan police.

Shaikh’s advocate argued that he was falsely implicated as a member of the robbery gang solely on suspicion. Pointing to the CCTV footage, the defence said that Shaikh was seen neither entering the train, nor jumping off the train with the accused. 

Court's observations

“This circumstance assumes significance as it, prima facie, indicates that the applicant had neither boarded the train along with accused Nos.1 to 7, nor jumped off the train when it reached Kasara Railway Station,” Justice NJ Jamadar said on March 13. 

Justice Jamadar also noted that no stolen property was recovered from Shaikh. “Evidently, it is not the prosecution case that the applicant was one of the persons who had sexually exploited the victim,” the court added. 

It also said that Shaikh has been in custody since October 9, 2021 and that the trial will take a considerable time. The court directed his release on furnishing a personal bond of Rs30,000. The court has clarified that the observations are only for the purpose of determining his bail. 

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