Comedian Kunal Kamra on Wednesday said that his shows scheduled in Bengaluru over the next 20 days have been cancelled because of threats to the venue. However, he did not mention who had issued the threats.
“They have been cancelled for two reasons,” he said in a tweet. “Firstly we didn’t get permission to seat 45 people in the venue that can seat more. Secondly, threats have been made to shut down the venue if I were to ever perform there.”
On Wednesday, a spokesperson of Art Khoj where Kamra was going to perform, confirmed that the show was cancelled, The News Minute reported. However, the spokesperson refused to say if the organisation had got directions from the police to do so.
This comes three days after comedian Munawar Faruqui’s event in Bengaluru was called off after the police warned the organisers against hosting a “controversial figure”. It had led to Faruqui sharing a note indicating that he might have to quit being a comedian.
Over the past few months, Faruqui’s shows have been cancelled in Raipur, Surat, Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Goa, and Mumbai as Hindutva groups have targeted him. In January, he had been arrested in Madhya Pradesh’s Indore city before a show as Hindutva groups complained to the police that he was going to make offensive jokes about Hinduism.
“For those on Twitter that have been wondering how ‘A Kamra goes on to perform while a Farooqui has to quit comedy’ we can find solace in the fact that the ruling class is at least trying to oppress with equality,” Kamra said.
Since November last year, Kamra is facing contempt charges for his tweets criticising the Supreme Court for the manner in which it had fast-tracked Republic TV chief Arnab Goswami’s bail plea in an abetment to suicide case. He had contrasted the trial to the plight of thousands of undertrials languishing in jails across the country, who find it difficult to get a hearing.
In January, the comedian had refused to apologise for his tweets in response to the contempt petition. He had said that “jokes are not reality and do not claim to be so”.