From living comedy to leaving comedy: Munawar Faruqui’s tragedy
On Nov 28, the comedian took to social media and wrote that hate has won, and an artist has lost. He announced that he’s quitting comedy in light of the injustices he’s been facing for the past year
Soon after his release from jail early this year, Munawar Faruqui released a on YouTube titled “Munawar Faruqui Leaving Comedy”. At the end of his video, he apologised to the viewers for the typo in the thumbnail. Faruqui said, “I’m not leaving comedy, I’m living comedy, because that’s the reason I’m alive. Main comedy nahi chor sakta kyunki shayad comedy ne mujhe zinda rakha.”
Who knew by the end of the year, Faruqui would actually be forced to quit comedy? On November 28, the comedian took to Twitter and Instagram and wrote that hate has won, and an artist has lost. He announced that he’s quitting comedy in light of the injustices he’s been facing for the past year.
12 of Faruqui’s shows got cancelled in the last two months. These were shows in Mumbai, Bangalore and Goa, for supposedly urban/progressive audiences. A statement by Bangalore Police asking Faruqui to cancel his show went viral on Twitter. It said, “It is learned that Munawar Faruqui is a controversial figure as he was been in controversial statements on other religion Gods.”
However, after Faruqui made this announcement, his fans stormed Twitter asking him to fight against the injustices and to not quit. The hashtags #IStandWithMunawarFaruqui and #MunawarFaruqui trended on Twitter.
Writer and comedian, Varun Grover, took to Instagram and said, “I am sad today that Munawar feels like quitting an art form he loves and is brilliant at- but am sadder that we have let our minds be manipulated enough to stay indifferent in the face of such developments.” Other comedians too showed their support to Faruqui by raising their voices on social media.
A few journalists and free speech advocates also pointed out how this is a systemic attack by the right wing on Muslims, and how Faruqui was reduced to only his religious identity, with his livelihood being snatched.
National Herald tried reaching out to the comedian but was unable to.