Stand up comedian Munawar Faruqui on February 5, received interim bail from the Supreme Court, after spending over a month in jail for allegedly insulting Hindu gods and goddesses in Indore, however, four of the five other people who were arrested along with him on January 1 are still behind bars.
The Indore district court, for the second time, on February 9, rejected the bail plea of a 23-year-old, Sadakat Khan, who was arrested along with Munawar.
Those who are still in jail include Sadakat Khan, Edwin Anthony, Prakhar Vyas and Nalin Yadav. While Munawar was charged with insulting Hindu deities, the charges against others are still unclear. Of the six people arrested in the case, only Munawar and another accused, who was found to be minor have got bail.
The Additional Sessions Judge, in the order passed on Feb 9, cited some past Supreme Court rulings and said the grant of bail would not be justified under the law.
"He had no role to play in this at all. He went to simply watch the show," MV Anthony, Edwin Anthony's father said in a statement.
Jitendra Bajpai, Anthony's lawyer explained that the police have accused him of selling tickets. "His bail is pending in the High Court," the lawyer said.
Prakhar Vyas' lawyer Ajay Bagadia accused the police of behaving arbitrarily in arresting Prakhar and his younger brother, who is a juvenile. "His younger brother was not a performer but tried to intervene when Prakhar was attacked," Bagadia said. "So then he was also made an accused."
Bagadia also said that his client would soon get bail: "There is no distinguishing factor between the two cases. If anything, Faruqui's case is worse. So we are a 100% sure of getting bail."
Munawar's case gained momentum and came to the fore as the police in his case had admitted that they had no evidence against him.
The comedian and five others were arrested on January 1 following a complaint by Eklavya Singh Gaud, son of local BJP MLA Malini Laxman Singh Gaud.
Munawar's bail petition was transferred from the Madhya Pradesh High Court to the Supreme Court. However, most of the other accused have only been heard by the sessions court till now.