SC orders Munawar Faruqui’s release, stays MP HC order denying bail and a UP court’s production warrant

The Supreme Court Friday ordered the release of stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqui in a case of hurting the religious sentiments of the majority community.

A two-judge bench of Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman and BR Gavai also stayed the Madhya Pradesh High Court order refusing bail to Faruqui.

Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman and Justice BR Gavai.

The bench also stayed the production warrant against Faruqui issued by a court in UP.

Advocate Saurabh Kripal, for the petitioner, pointed out to the Court that apart from the fact that the allegations made in the FIR were vague, the procedure contained in Section 41 Cr.P.C. as adumbrated in “Arnesh Kumar Vs. State of Bihar & Anr.”, had also not been followed before arresting Faruqui.

Faruqui was arrested on 1 January 2021, along with four others, for allegedly cracking “indecent” and “vulgar” jokes about Hindu gods.

Also Read: Munawar Faruqui Bail Order: Whose Liberty is it Anyway?

The complainant was Eklavya Singh Gaud, the son of a BJP legislator and convenor of the Hindu Rakshak Sangathan.

Last month, the Madhya Pradesh High Court denied bail to Faruqui and co-accused Nalin Yadav.

Justice Rohit Arya of the High Court said that the material collected so far suggested that, in an organized public show, under the garb of standup comedy at a public place on commercial lines, prima facie scurrilous, disparaging utterances, outraging the religious feelings of a class of citizens of India with deliberate intent, were made by the applicants.