MP High Court Rejects Comedian Munawar Faruqui Bail for the Third Time
By: Sashwata Saha
The Madhya Pradesh High Court on Thursday rejected the bail application of comedian Munawar Faruqui and Indore resident Nalin Yadav, who were arrested on January 1 for allegedly hurting Hindu religious sentiments during a comedy show in Indore.
The court rejected the comedian's argument that he had made no offensive comment in his show on the day he was arrested. saying investigations were on and more incriminating evidence could show up.
Faruqui's lawyer had argued that he had been invited by the organisers of the show and was present but he had not made any such jokes that day. However, a single-judge bench of Justice Rohit Arya rejected the argument saying, “The evidence/material collected so far, suggest that in an organised public show under the garb of standup 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 intendment, were made by the applicants.”
In his ruling, Arya also highlighted that it is a “constitutional duty on every citizen and the state” to promote harmony and the spirit of common brotherhood irrespective of religious, linguistic, sectional and regional diversities.
This is the third time that the comedian's bail request has been rejected, that too on his birthday, his friend was quoted as telling international news agency Reuters. “His family is very disheartened. Today is his birthday and we cannot organise anything for him,” Faruqui's friend Saad Sheikh told Reuters.
Munawar Faruqui, 29, was arrested along with five other comedians in Indore on January 2, on a complaint by Eklvaya Singh Gaur, the son of BJP MLA. All six were accused of making "filthy and indecent jokes" about Hindu gods and goddesses, as well as Home Minister Amit Shah.
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