Johar gets interim relief in AIB Roast case

Updated - December 04, 2021 11:36 pm IST

Published - February 21, 2015 02:07 am IST - MUMBAI:

In an interim relief to producer-director Karan Johar in the AIB Roast controversy, the Bombay High Court on Friday restrained the Mumbai police from arresting him till March 16.

On that date, the court will hear a bunch of petitions filed by the performers of the controversial ‘AIB Roast’ show seeking quashing of the FIR against them.

Mr. Johar, in his petition, denied all the allegations in the FIR, which he claimed was an infringement on his fundamental right to free speech and expression.

The FIR was registered in the Tardeo Police Station under Sections 294, 509, 34 and 120 B of the Indian Penal Code; section 15 of the Environment Protection Act; Section 52 of the Maharashtra Regional Town Planning Act; sections 110 and 131 of the Bombay Police Act; and Sections 66A and 67 of the Information Technology Act, 2000.

‘False and frivolous’

Mr. Johar said the allegations were “false, frivolous, baseless, concocted, mischievous and malicious. The complaint and FIR were initiated with ulterior motives and in complete violation of the spirit of freedom of speech.”

He said the language used in the show was vulgar, but not obscene. “Complainant does not arouse any lustful, impure or lecherous thoughts and actions and merely because slang and vulgar language is used, it does not become obscene,” the petition said.

Mr. Johar said the concept of stand-up comedians was not new to the country, though the ‘roast’ form of comedy was. But then it was an established form of humour in which the performer drew laughter from jokes made either at the expense of the performer (self-deprecatory humour) or at the expense of the others.

The Tardeo police had registered a case against 14 people, including the president of the National Sports Club of India (NSCI) Jayantilal Shah; NSCI general secretary Ravinder Aggarwal; and organisers of the AIB Roast Karan Johar, Ranveer Singh, Rohan Joshi, Tanmay Bhat, Gursimran Khamba, Ashish Shakya, Aditi Mittal, Deepika Padukone, Alia Bhatt, Rajeev Masand and Arjun Kapoor.

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