A court in Bihar’s Madhubani district granted bail to a man accused of molestation on the condition that he should wash and iron the clothes of all women in his village free of cost for six months, The Hindu reported on Thursday.
Jhanjharpur Additional Session Avinash Kumar had passed the order on September 16 in response to a petition of a washerman named Lalan Kumar Safi who was arrested in the case on April 18.
The accused man had allegedly assaulted a woman in Laukaha Bazar area of Madhubani district on the night of April 17, The Telegraph reported.
“The petitioner shall wash and iron the clothes of all women of the village of informant including informant / victim free of cost for six months and after completion of six months shall obtain a certificate from mukhia / sarpanch or any respectable public servant of the village and file in the court concerned,” the judge said in his order.
He also directed the accused man to submit a bail bond of Rs 10,000 and two sureties of the same amount.
Laukaha station house officer Santosh Kumar told the newspaper that the police have charged Safi under Section 354B of the Indian Penal Code, which deals with assaulting a woman with the intention of disrobing her. “The chargesheet in the case was submitted in the court in May and the judgment has come now,” he said.
The officer said that the police will also keep a watch on Safi to ensure that he follows the court’s order.
The court passed the order even as the complainant’s lawyer stated that she did not want to pursue the case further. A reconciliation petition has been filed to end the criminal proceedings, according to The Telegraph.
Judge Kumar has imposed such unusual bail conditions on several occasions in the past as well, according to Bar and Bench.
On July 9, he had granted bail to a man facing charges of attempted murder on the condition that he should “plant five fruit-bearing trees” in his locality or in a public place. On August 28, he had ordered a man accused of molestation to clean and maintain the drain in front of his house as a condition for bail.