Munawar Faruqui is accused of hurting religious sentiments by allegedly passing objectionable remarks about Hindu deities.
Over a month after his arrest by Madhya Pradesh police in a case related to allegedly hurting religious sentiments, the Supreme Court today granted interim bail to comedian Munawar Faruqui. According to Bar and Bench, a bench of Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman and BR Gavai also stayed the production warrant issued by the Uttar Pradesh Police against Faruqui in a separate case.
According to ANI, the apex court also issued a notice to Madhya Pradesh Police on Faruqui’s plea challenging the MP High Court’s order declining his bail plea.
Munawar Faruqui is accused of hurting religious sentiments by allegedly passing objectionable remarks about Hindu deities during one of his shows. He and four other people were arrested after a complaint by a BJP MLA’s son. He also accused Faruqui of passing objectionable remarks on Union Home Minister Amit Shah. The MP police arrested one more person subsequently in the case.
The Madhya Pradesh High Court had refused to grant him bail stating that promoting harmony is one of the constitutional duties of people.
According to PTI, the MP court had said, “The evidence/material collected so far suggests that in an organized public show under the garb of stand-up comedy at a public place on commercial lines, prima facie, scurrilous, disparaging utterances, outraging religious feelings of a class of citizens of India with deliberate intent, were made by the applicant.”
The comedy show was held at a cafe in Indore on January 1. Eklavya Singh Gaud, son of BJP MLA Malini Laxman Singh Gaud, had filed a complaint against Faruqui and others. He had also forced the organisers to stop the show after the alleged remarks were made.
The arrest was made following the complaint under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including section 295-A which deals deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage religious feelings of any class.