Supreme Court: In a big relief to Munawar Faruqui, the bench of RF Nariman and BR Gavai, JJ has granted interim bail to the stand-up comic.

The order of the Court came after it was pointed out to it that the allegations made in the FIR against the comic are vague and also the procedure contained in Section 41 Cr.P.C. as adumbrated by the Supreme Court in Arnesh Kumar v. State of Bihar, (2014) 8 SCC 273, has not been followed before making the arrest.

The Court, hence,  stayed the Judgment of the Madhya Pradesh High Court and released the comic on ad-interim bail on conditions to the satisfaction of the trial court. In the meantime, there shall be stay of the production warrants as well.

On 01-01-2021, a stand-up comedy show was organized at Munro Café. The complainant, who was a custodian of Hindu Protection Congregation (Sanghatan); had alleged that in the show, the comedians were deliberately cutting filthy and indecent jokes on Hindu Gods and Goddesses and BJP National President, Amit Shah. As a result, the comedians had hurt and outraged religious sentiments of the complainant. An FIR was filed for the offences punishable under Sections 295A, 298, 269 and 188/34 IPC and the applicant was kept in custody since 01-01-2021. The applicant had sought for bail before the Court of Magistrate and the Sessions Judge respectively but both the applications had been rejected.

Madhya Pradesh High Court’s single judge bench of Rohit Arya, J. had, on 28.01.2021, rejected the bail application of Comic Munawar Faruqui and the organizers of the show.

[Munawar v. State of Madhya Pradesh, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 60, order dated 05.02.2021]

MP HC | “The goals enshrined under Art. 51A(e) and (f) are part of our vibrant Constitution and not dead letters”; HC rejects bail application of Comedian Munawar Faruqui

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