A sessions court in Indore rejected the bail plea of Sadaqat Khan, who was arrested with comedian Munawar Faruqui, for the second time on Wednesday, Live Law reported. Additional Sessions Judge Yatindra Guru said the circumstances of the case do not change just because Faruqui has been granted interim bail by the Supreme Court.
Faruqui was arrested on January 1 from a cafe in Indore on a complaint by the vigilante son of a Bharatiya Janata Party politician who alleged that objectionable statements about Hindu deities were going to be made at the comedian’s show. People present at the club say that the police detained him before he had actually started performing.
On January 4, 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 Khan, a Mumbai-based engineer, was arrested for allegedly making abusive remarks about complainant Eklavya Singh Gaur, the chief of Hindutva group Hind Rakshak Sangathan. A video of him being assaulted by a bystander while in police custody was released on social media.
In his bail plea, Khan had cited the Supreme Court order granting bail to Faruqui, and contended he should get bail on the basis of “judicial parity”.
During the hearing on Wednesday, the Tukoganj police opposed Khan’s bail plea by contending that he had been organising “similar shows” on social media, and that various complaints have been filed against him in Uttar Pradesh as well as in Mumbai. The police said that Khan had been organising “such programmes” with Faruqui for quite some time.
The police added that they have a video clip showing Khan recording Faruqui’s programme and that this video was on his phone. They also expressed fears about “a law-and-order situation” if Khan was released on bail.
The judge heard the arguments and rejected Khan’s bail, noting that there had been no change in circumstances after his first bail plea was rejected. Therefore, in such a scenario, if his second bail application is allowed, it would amount to a “review” of the previous order, which is not permissible under the criminal law, the court said.
The court also noted the submission Additional Public Prosecutor Sanjay Sharma that Faruqui was granted only interim bail, Khan cannot invoke the principle of parity on its basis.
Meanwhile, the Indore district court on Wednesday extended the judicial custody of the four men, including Khan, arrested along with Faruqui till February 24, reported PTI.