Three years after actor Saif Ali Khan allegedly got into a brawl with a businessman at a hotel in Mumbai, the case has now been referred to a mediation centre.
“The prosecution has referred the matter for mediation and the accused has no problem with the mediation. So, the matter is referred to the mediation centre attached to Esplanade court,” the judge said.
Saif Ali Khan arrived in court 11.25 am dressed in a white shirt and blue trousers, without any security. The two other accused, Bilal Amrohi and Shakeel Ladak, were absent. Even the complainant, NRI businessman Iqbal Mir Sharma, was not present due to “business commitments”.
The judge asked the actor if he agreed to the mediation suggestion, to which Saif Ali Khan responded positively.
The actor’s advocate Girish Kulkarni said: “It is a compoundable aspect under section 325, mediation is permissible with permission of the court. That is why the court suggested it. Saif is ready, the public prosecutor has suggested the same to Iqbal. In mediation both the parties would be asked whether they want to withdraw the case mutually.”
Kulkarni added: “On July 27 there is a date for mediation. If both parties fail to come to a conclusion and settle, a further date for the trial will be given.”
A complaint was filed against Saif Ali Khan and his two friends, Bilal Amrohi and Shakeel Ladak, by NRI businessman Iqbal Mir Sharma on February 22, 2012. In his complaint, Mir Sharma alleged that Saif Ali Khan had assaulted him at Wasabi restaurant in Taj hotel when he protested against the noise being made by the actor and his friends.
At the time of the incident, Saif Ali Khan was accompanied by wife Kareena Kapoor, sister-in-law Karisma Kapoor, friends Malaika Arora Khan, Amrita Arora and other friends. Saif had alleged his friends had been abused and provoked by Sharma.
The court was scheduled to record Sharma’s statement on Thursday. Sharma had flown down from South Africa on the last two dates scheduled for the same, but was absent for the hearing today.