Mumbai: In an unusual order, the Bombay High Court Friday directed four men from the city to clean the Mahim dargah on four Sundays next month in return for quashing an FIR registered against them. A bench of Justices B P Dharmadhikari and Revati Mohite-Dere took up urgent hearing of a petition filed by a 19-year-old man from Mahim and a 22-year-old man from the Dharavi area in the city.
The petitioners, both Muslims, had got into an altercation with two Hindu men aged 18 and 19, in December 2017 during the Mahim fair. The altercation escalated and the four of them came to blows. An FIR was registered charging them with various provisions for unlawful assembly and assault under the Indian Penal Code. The maximum punishment for the charges against them ranges between six months and three years.
However, all four of them eventually came to a settlement and approached the HC seeking that the FIR be quashed by their mutual consent. They argued that considering their young age and the fact that they were repentant, the court must treat them with leniency.
While the bench agreed to quash the FIR, it said that all four of them will have to be part of some sort of community service. It then gave them the option of agreeing to sweep and clean the Mahim Dargah. The bench also said that since two of the men in the case were Hindus, if they wished, they could instead clean the Siddhivinayak temple in the city.
All four men, however, told the bench that they had no objection to cleaning the dargah and agreed to take up the community service task for four Sundays next month. The bench accordingly, agreed to quash the FIR against them.