Chennai Woman Faces Charges for Assaulting Mumbai Airport Officers

Mumbai, 9th July 2024: Mumbai: The Sahar police have filed charges against Dhanlaxmi Shanmugan, a resident of Chennai aged approximately 42-45, for allegedly assaulting and obstructing public servants from performing their duties.

Incident Details:

Dhanlaxmi arrived at Mumbai Airport from Muscat on July 7. During customs inspection, an officer found a suspicious capsule in her handbag. While in custody, she reportedly bit and scratched an officer, as well as assaulted three sweepers before disposing of the capsule by flushing it down the airport toilet.

According to police reports, at 3:50 am on July 7, Dhanlaxmi was in the arrival lounge at Mumbai Airport. Customs officers grew suspicious due to her demeanour. When questioned by Customs Officer Asmita Rajpurohit, Dhanlaxmi, who hails from Chennai and had travelled from Muscat via Air India Airlines (IX236), could not communicate in languages other than Tamil. Another officer attempted to question her in Tamil, but she evaded answering.

Upon scanning her luggage, officers discovered an egg-sized capsule wrapped in black tape inside her handbag. She was escorted to the Air Intelligence Unit office for further inquiry. Concerned about a smell emanating from the capsule, Shashkant Sabale, another customs officer, attempted to wash it.

As Sabale headed towards the restroom with the capsule, Dhanlaxmi allegedly tried to retrieve it. In the ensuing struggle, she reportedly bit Sabale’s finger and scratched him, managing to seize the capsule and flee to the restroom. Despite efforts by three sweepers to intervene, she pushed them aside, disposed of the capsule in the toilet, and flushed it away.

Subsequently apprehended, Dhanlaxmi reportedly did not cooperate during questioning and refused to provide any information regarding the capsule. No additional contraband was found on her person.

Legal Action Taken:

Following the incident, a customs officer brought Dhanlaxmi to the Sahar police station, where a case was registered against her under sections 115 (2) (Voluntarily causing hurt) and 132 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) of the Indian Penal Code.

A Sahar police station officer commented, “She appears to be a labourer, and the capsule could contain gold. Her language barrier, as she speaks only Tamil, has posed challenges during interrogation. We will arrange for a translator to facilitate further questioning, which we hope will shed light on the incident. She has been presented before the court, which has remanded her to police custody for two days.”