Court orders probe into ‘AIB Roast’ show

A Mumbai court Thursday ordered police to investigate and register an FIR against 14 celebrities involved in the controversial “AIB Roast” show performed in a stadium here Jan 20, a lawyer said.

Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate C.S. Baviskar of the fourth Girgaum Court directed police in Tardeo to probe the matter against officials of the National Sports Club of India (NSCI), AIB Roast and many film personalities after a criminal complaint was lodged by social activist Santosh Daundkar.

Lawyer Abha Singh said the accused named were NSCI president Jayantilal Shah, secretary-general Ravinder Aggarwal, AIB Roast organisers, film personalities Karan Johar, Arjun Kapoor, Ranvir Singh, Rohan Joshi, Tanmay Bhatt, Gursimran Khamba, Ashish Shakya, Aditi Mittal, Deepika Padukone, Alia Bhatt, flim critic Rajeev Masand, and other unidentified people from the NSCI and “AIB Roast” show who took part in the “pornographic, obscene and vulgar show”.

The lawyer said the stadium was built on leased land provided by the Maharashtra government and can be used only for sports-related events.

Instead, in violation of the lease agreement, a commercial, vulgar, obscene and pornographic show that attracted several Bollywood personalities was held where objectionable words were uttered before a large number of women audience, in open defiance of the laws of the land, she added.

The complainant invoked several sections of the India Penal Code, the Information Technology Act, Bombay Police Act, Environment Protection Act and Monopolistic and Restrictive Trade Practice Act in the case.

Arguing before the court, the lawyer said it was shocking how the votaries of freedom of speech justify such acts when they had no respect for the law, more so at a time when the entire country was concerned with women’s safety issues.

She also questioned how could such a programme be allowed on such land without the knowledge of the municipal authorities and why police granted permission for it.

Abha Singh

Abha Singh is a former civil servant and presently an advocate practicing in the Bombay High Court. She is a renowned social activist who has done considerable work in the realm of woman’s rights, gender equality and justice. She has done an M.Phil on Child Rights from the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Abha Singh was the third runner-up and the lead woman finalist in the Times of India Lead India Campaign in 2008. She was further awarded the Chevening Scholarship to attend the London School of Economics and Political Science. Her talk ‘Honour Killings in India and the Legal Complications of Section 498A” at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London received widespread acclaim. Abha Singh was also invited as a speaker at TEDx Oxbridge, conducted jointly by the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge in May, 2017. Sensing the call of duty beyond service, she gave up a successful career in the Government to serve a larger cause by donning the robes of the legal profession. Abha Singh obtained a law degree from Bombay University while working as a Government. Abha Singh took up the case of the two Palghar girls in right earnest when she learnt about their unlawful arrest by the Police for innocent comments on Facebook. Due to her perseverance the guilty cops were suspended and the girls were exonerated honorably. Abha Singh has been successfully pursuing the Salman Khan Hit-and-Run case to ensure that the rule of law is upheld and the youth are educated against the hazards of drunken driving.

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