Mumbai: Youth begin community service after mid-day expose
Days after mid-day highlighted how some youngsters were ignoring the HC’s orders to clean Mira Road station, they reported for duty for the first time
For more than a month, they shrugged off a high court order to do community service, but just days after mid-day’s report, a band of youths was forced to clean up their act and get down to cleaning Mira Road station.
Station master supervises the youths ordered to clean the premises as community service. Pic/Azim Tamboli
A front-page report in this paper (April 13) highlighted how the Bombay High Court showed mercy and quashed the rioting case against these youths, instead sentencing them to three months of community service (once a week, on Sundays). One group was asked to clean a municipal school in Thane district, while the second group was asked to clean Mira Road station. But mid-day visited both the spots and found the HC’s noble initiative had derailed. At the school, the first group was simply lounging about and wasting time, while the second group hadn’t even turned up once to work at the station.
mid-day also pointed out how officials seemed indifferent to the initiative – at the school, the headmaster had not bothered to supervise the youths. At the other spot, railway officials said they already had cleaning staff and weren’t sure who would provide the brooms.
However, these issues had been ironed out by yesterday, when the second group of youths reported to Mira Road station for community service for the first time. Station master Prashant Bhushan Kirkera said, “Out of eight youngsters, seven were present while one was absent due to illness. They swept platform number 1 and one of the foot-over-bridges and also removed garbage from there. The youths were also made to clean the rust from railings and other structures on the platform. They worked till 5 pm.”
Sources at the school also informed this reporter that the first group had also turned up and finished their work properly.
In April last year, two separate groups (18 youths in total) had gone to a resort in Gorai, where they got into a scrap and assaulted each other. According to sources, they are all residents of Borivli, Mira Road and Bhayandar, and most of them are college students. Both groups filed FIRs against each other at Gorai police station. Later, they told the HC they had settled their differences. In February this year, the cases were quashed and they were asked to do community service instead.