A staff member at Wasabi restaurant in Taj Mahal hotel has reportedly told the Colaba police that actor Saif Ali Khan had provoked fellow diner Iqbal Sharma before punching him first on Tuesday night. The statement could prove significant in the case, which is built on circumstantial evidence in the absence of CCTV cameras.
Sources in the Colaba police told HT on Friday that the employee was one of the 16 witnesses whose statements have been recorded in connection with the actor’s infamous midnight brawl with a South African businessman and his family members. The other witnesses include other hotel staffers and Sharma’s family members — in-laws, wife, and a friend.
The police also questioned Sharma late on Thursday in connection with Saif's allegation that he was attacked first and had struck back in self defence.
"We have recorded the statements of the parties involved. We will now make enquiries into the allegations made by them," said Vinod Sawant, senior police inspector of Colaba police station.
Sawant did not confirm or deny the witness’ revelation. “We are cross-checking every statement before filing the charge sheet,” he said.