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Munawar Faruqui's Co-Accused Denied Bail, Family Says He Wasn't Linked to Show

Sadaqat Khan moved the sessions court seeking bail on the basis of "parity" (similar circumstances) as Faruqui was granted interim bail by the Supreme Court.

New Delhi: The Indore district court on Tuesday rejected for the second time the bail plea of a 23-year-old man arrested along with stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqui.

Sadaqat Khan moved the sessions court seeking bail on the basis of “parity” (similar circumstances) as Faruqui was granted interim bail by the Supreme Court.

Additional Sessions Judge Yatindra Kumar Guru, however, rejected his plea. His first bail application had been rejected by the court on January 11.

Khan, a Mumbai-based civil engineer, is in a local jail since January 3 following his arrest. Of six persons arrested in the case, only Faruqui and another accused – who was found to be a minor – are out on bail.

The Additional Sessions Judge, in the order passed on Tuesday, cited some past Supreme Court rulings and said the grant of bail would not be justified under the law.

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Khan’s lawyer Surendra Kumar Verma presented the February 5 order of the Supreme Court granting bail to Faruqui, and said his client should get bail “on the basis of judicial parity”.

But Additional Public Prosecutor Sanjay Sharma objected, saying the order passed by the apex court in Faruqui’s case was interim, and Khan can not invoke the principle of parity on its basis.

Comedian Faruqui (32) and five others involved in organising a show here on January 1 were arrested following a complaint by Eklavya Singh Gaud, son of local BJP MLA Malini Laxman Singh Gaud. The MLA’s son alleged that objectionable comments were going to be made about Hindu deities and Union home minister Amit Shah during the show – however, the arrests took place before the show even began, leading to it being cancelled.

Khan’s family said he had known Faruqui only for a short amount of time, Indian Express reported, and had nothing to do with the show itself, though the police have accused him of being an organiser. Khan works as a civil contractor in Mumbai, and was in Indore to visit his ill grandmother. “He had nothing to do with the show, nor did he crack any jokes. He was arrested from court the next day when he had gone to meet Munawar,” his uncle, Yusuf Khan, told the newspaper.

The bail hearing for two others arrested – Prakhar Vyas and Edwin Antonio – is set for February 12.

(With PTI inputs)