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Above: A muharram procession in New Delhi (file picture). Photo: Anil Shakya

Muharram, the Shia religious event – mourning the death of Imam Hussain, the grandson of Prophet Muhammad – is known for its ardent followers hitting themselves with sharp instruments to draw blood, a way of atoning for the death of Hussain.

While that event is three months away, the Bombay High Court has taken suo motu cognisance of the fact that children often participate in those processions and are made to use the same sharp instruments on themselves to draw blood.

On Monday (July 3) the court directed the Mumbai Police to meet with the religious leaders of the Shia community and make sure that no child participates in the processions.

This action emanated from a division bench of Justices Rajendra Savant and Sadhana Jadhav hearing a suo motu PIL on severe injuries suffered by children in the processions.

India Legal Bureau

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