Mumbai: As the India-Sri Lanka face-off brought the country to a halt, even crime, it seems, took a break in deference to the adopted national religion.
Police officials in the northern suburbs were in for a shock when not one non-cognisable (NC) complaint, let alone an FIR, was lodged in the 16 police stations in the region, including Kurar, Malvani and Dindoshi, on Saturday.
Not one non-cognisable complaint, let alone an FIR, was lodged at 16 police stations in Mumbai's northern suburbs.
This, against an average of 75 cases, including those of kidnapping and murder, being registered in these stations every day.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone XI) Dr Mahesh Patil attributed the absence of reported crime to the World Cup final and said it was an encouraging sign.
"This sends out a positive signal that living in peace and harmony is possible and people can do so at all times," he said.
The absence of complaints was welcomed by the policemen for more reasons than one.
The most important, however, was that it allowed those at the police stations to watch the nail-biting finale in peace.
"The bandobast was heavy throughout the day.
The celebrations were peaceful even after India won the trophy. We had fears of the situation getting out of hand, but everybody was too engrossed in revelling," said senior inspector Bhawgan Chate of the Borivli police station.
No NCs were lodged even in the following areas of the northern suburbs notorious for criminal activity:
- Malvani: The area is known for communal violence. On an average, 10 cases of serious offences are registered each day.
- Kurar: Crime is order of the day in this slum area, with several cases of kidnapping and murders being reported in the past few months.
- Samta Nagar: Known as a breeding ground for hardcore criminals, chain-snatching and rape cases are common in the area.
- Dindoshi: Stabbing is common in Kali Basti, which is under the jurisdiction of the Dindoshi police station. It is heavily patrolled due to the internecine rivalry between slumlords.