The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Nine hours amid information blackout
- Shayan in: Wife, father & lawyer cool heels

Calcutta, May 13: 'Where have they kept him' The lock-up' But how long will he be standing inside that cage'

Almost three hours after Shayan Munshi was taken into custody by airport police and brought to Barrackpore court around 10.30 am, his wife Peeya had no clue about what lay in store. And there was no way she could ferret out information.

Neither court officials nor Shayan's father knew whether he was detained or arrested.

The wait, to know what had happened to him, seemed endless.

'This is ridiculous. Delhi police have nothing against my son and he was perfectly aware of it when he planned his trip. Peeya has already spoken to the police brass (there) and they said they were clueless about why Shayan had been stopped. Then why is he being detained' And if he has been arrested, why isn't he being produced' his father, P.K. Munshi, asked.

In the court compound, the crowd kept swelling with journalists and TV crews turning up for sound bites and photo ops ' after all a model-turned-actor was inside, never mind if he was not in the big league.

The policemen, too, were not sure about what their bosses were planning to do with the man tucked inside a room at least 50 metres from where the crowd lay in wait.

'All that I have managed to learn is that Shayan has been arrested under Section 41 of the CrPC, but I still have no details about the case. It's past 2 pm and I have no clue when I'll get to know about the details to prepare for the case,' said his lawyer Subhas Dutta.

Half-an-hour later, Barrackpore subdivisional police officer Sugata Sen arrived and went into a huddle with senior officers from the Airport police station.

Peeya, a model and actor, sat on a small wooden chair under a tree shade while Shayan's father looked around for a cigarette. His car had met with an accident on way to the airport on VIP Road ' its windscreen was damaged. It had been a gruelling day for the elderly man. Dutta shuffled through his law books.

Around 6 pm, the investigating officer, Dulal Chandra Sarkar, walked out of a room and there was a sudden flurry of activity. 'Production,' Sen murmured.

Minutes later Shayan was escorted out of the room where he is believed to have been cooped up most of the day and was made to walk a few yards to the courtroom.

Sporting an olive green T-shirt, earrings, ash-coloured chinos and canvas shoes, he walked past the crowd, settling his shades, the type a cricketer would wear under lights.

Inside the courtroom, the crowd jostled with the police as the public prosecutor and Shayan's lawyer took their position. Peeya sat on a bench behind the lawyer.

Shayan looked at his wife for a moment. Their honeymoon had failed to take off.

An hour and two intervals later, the verdict came ' Shayan was released on bail, almost nine hours after he had been held.

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