The Madhya Pradesh High Court on Friday adjourned the bail application filed by comedian Munawar Faruqui to next week after the police failed to produce the case diary, reported Bar and Bench. A single bench of Justice Rohit Arya has summoned the case diary and will now hear the matter again on January 22.
“The Tukojiganj police station is just 500 meters away from the High Court but the police is not deliberately presenting the case diary because Munawar Faruqui, who is the main accused, never performed at the event,” Faruqui’s counsel Anshuman Shrivastava told India Today. “We were to make these submissions in court today.”
Faruqui had been arrested from a cafe in Madhya Pradesh’s Indore city on January 1 for allegedly hurting religious sentiments during a programme, and has since been in custody. He was arrested on basis of a complaint by Eklavya Singh Gaur, chief of Hindutva group Hind Rakshak Sangathan. Gaur is the son of Bharatiya Janata Party legislator Malini Gaur.
On January 4, two days after his arrest, the Indore Police had said that there was no visual evidence to show that Faruqui had insulted Hindu deities. Along with Faruqui, four others – Nalin Yadav, Prakhar Vyas, Edwin Anthony and Priyam Vyas – were also arrested on similar charges. A day later, Faruqui’s friend Sadaqat Khan was arrested for allegedly making abusive remarks about Gaur.
Meanwhile, despite the lack of concrete evidence, the bail pleas of Faruqui and others have been rejected twice, stating that their release would disrupt law and order. On January 13, Khan’s bail plea was also rejected citing similar grounds.
Earlier this week, Indore Superintendent of Police Vijay Khatri said that Faruqui had not made any jokes about Hindu deities, or even begun his performance and he was arrested on the basis of a Gaur’s claims that he had overheard jokes during rehearsal.