NEW DELHI : The Supreme Court on Monday transferred to Indore, all FIRs against comedian Munawar Faruqui for allegedly making remarks on Hindu deities during a show and hurting religious sentiments.
A bench headed by Justice B.R. Gavai also extended Faruqui’s interim protection for three weeks in connection with a production warrant in Delhi.
The bench, also comprising justice Sanjay Karol, made it clear that the court has not gone into the merits of the plea for quashing the case.
As Faruqui’s counsel contended that FIRs should not be transferred to Indore as there is threat to his client’s safety over there, the bench orally observed: “Indore is a safe city. It is also close to Mumbai. What is the issue with transferring the FIRs to Indore?”
The counsel urged the bench to club the FIRs and transfer them either to Mumbai or Delhi and not Indore or Prayagraj. He said there was a huge mob and there were threats to his client’s safety in these cities.
After hearing arguments, the bench said: “Taking into consideration the facts and circumstances, and the previous order of this court, we are inclined to transfer all the complaints to a police station in Indore.”
The bench said it has not considered the merits of the matter insofar as the prayer for quashing and the petitioner is at liberty to initiate such proceedings as permitted under the law.
In February, the top court had released Faruqui on an interim bail by staying the Madhya Pradesh High Court order, declining to grant him bail. The son of a BJP MLA had filed a complaint against Faruqui and others.
According to the FIR, the remarks were made at a comedy show held at a cafe in Indore in January 2021. It was alleged that in the show jokes were made regarding Hindu gods and goddesses and Union Home Minister Amit Shah. — IANS