'…anti-national': Comedian Nalin Yadav, arrested with Munawar Faruqui in 2021, says still faces harassment, BJP reacts | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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'…anti-national': Comedian Nalin Yadav, arrested with Munawar Faruqui in 2021, says still faces harassment, BJP reacts

May 28, 2024 03:57 PM IST

Nalin Yadav claimed that the harassment had begun soon after he was released from jail in February 2021. BJP said the comedian wants to gain cheap popularity.

On January 1, 2021, stand-up comedians Nalin Yadav and Munawar Faruqui, along with two others, were arrested following a complaint that the Faruqui made objectionable remarks about Hindu deities during a show at a cafe in Indore. Munawar Faruqui walked out of Indore central jail in February 2021 after the Supreme Court granted him bail in the case. Days later, on February 26, the Indore bench of the Madhya Pradesh high court ordered the release of Nalin Yadav from jail on interim bail.

On May 26 night, Nalin Yadav posted a video from March, purportedly showing a group assaulting him and his brother on a busy street.
On May 26 night, Nalin Yadav posted a video from March, purportedly showing a group assaulting him and his brother on a busy street.

But, according to Nalin Yadav, it was just the beginning of hard days for him. Nalin Yadav from Madhya Pradesh has accused “some known affiliates of the ruling party” of harassing him and his younger brother for the last three years. On May 26 night, Nalin Yadav posted a video from March, purportedly showing a group assaulting him and his brother on a busy street.

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In an interview with The Indian Express, Nalin Yadav claimed that the harassment had begun soon after he was released from jail. He alleged that the police told him to shift residences since “this would keep happening”.

Nalin, in an Instagram post alongside the video, alleged that ever since his arrest, he and his brother have faced “relentless harassment and violence from local goons and affiliates of the ruling party”.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday, however, denied the charges and termed them as a tactic of the 28-year-old comedian to gain cheap popularity, news agency PTI reported. Nalin's allegations have come after a notice issued against him by the administration in connection with a case lodged two months back over a dispute with a person at Pithampur, located 40 km from Indore, in Dhar district.

The notice has been issued against Nalin by an executive magistrate under Code Of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) section 107 (requiring to show cause why he should not be ordered to execute a bond with a surety) for maintaining peace, PTI added.

What did Nalin Yadav claim?

In the Instagram post, Nalin claimed, “In my hometown, I have a new identity as an anti-nationalist. There are a few people who are relatives and known affiliates of the ruling party, who have been harassing my brother and me for three years now.”

"After getting released from jail, I haven't been home for more than three days in two years because some of the goons here were continuously harassing us," he alleged.

“Soon after I was released from jail, a group of men assaulted me… The FIR was registered (on November 21, 2023), but with watered down sections. The police kept telling me to leave my home as this would keep happening,” The Indian Express quoted Nalin as saying.

According to Nalim, he had to give up on his stand-up dreams as most venues shunned him. He took up the job at a factory that manufactures polythene bags in the Pithampur industrial area, around 30 km from Indore. Nalim told the newspaper that she was fired from a company in Indore after they learned about his case.

What police said

According to police officials, a person, Sawan Singh Dabar, had allegedly assaulted Nalin in Pithampur on March 24 this year over an “old enmity” following which an FIR was registered against the former on charges of assault, abuse and issuing threats. Dabar had also lodged a complaint of assault against Yadav, the police told PTI.

In view of the tension between Nalin and Dabar over the incident, the notice has been issued on an application of police, to both the parties to maintain peace.

Nalin lawyer Ashar Warsi said legal options were being considered against the notice issued in the comedian's name.

Following a complaint by Nalin's younger brother Akash, an FIR was registered at Sector Number-1 police station of Pithampur on November 21, 2023, against local residents Uday Raghuvanshi and Krishna Thakur on charges of assault, abuse and issuing threats “over an old dispute”, police officials said.

The comedian has alleged that different people from the same group in the Pithampur area were constantly harassing him and his younger brother.

What did BJP say?

When contacted, state BJP spokesperson Alok Dubey told PTI that the comedian was carrying out a false propaganda against his party in a bid to get cheap publicity through social media.

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