The Delhi High Court recently granted anticipatory bail to businessman Sanjay Kapoor, whose company had organised an auction of painter Maqbool Fida Husain paintings, including some his controversial ones, at Maurya Sheraton Hotel.
Sanjay is director of Genesis colours, the parent company that owns brands like Satya Paul and E-factor. Kapoor's company had in February 2006, sponsored the auction of Husain's paintings. Kapoor sought anticipatory bail fearing arrest in connection with cases against the painter.
Justice Siddharth Mridul has granted bail to Kapoor till July 9. Arguing before the court, Kapoor's counsel K.K. Manan contended that there were no allegations against Kapoor in the FIR lodged against Husain for allegedly showing disrespect to the Hindu goddesses and Bharatmata in his paintings.
"In fact, my client Kapoor is nowhere involved in this matter and the proceedings are liable to be quashed against him. As per the investigation, the only role attributed to him is of organising the auction," Manan added.
On May 8, a different bench of the Delhi High court had quashed three of the six pending cases against the eminent painter, taking note of his age and work. "At 90 deserves to be in his home-painting his canvas".
Justice Sanjay Kishen Kaul had also suggested that the legislative in its wisdom might examine the feasibility of possible changes in law to help artist express his views without a sense of fear.
"A sense of growing fear and curtailment of the right of the free expression in such creative persons is hardly a desirable or acceptable state of affairs," the order said.
The bench had also questioned the understanding of people who filed complaints against the eminent painter, saying that they were not aware that there are many artists who embrace nudity as a part of contemporary art.
"It seems that the complainants are not the types who would go to art galleries or have an interest in contemporary art because if they did, they would know that there are many artists who embrace nudity as part of their contemporary art," the court said.