The Goa Police on Wednesday arrested four musicians for performing songs that allegedly “insulted religious sentiments of Hindus” at the Serendipity Festival in the city, the police said.
The investigating officer Subhash Gaonkar said the four artists — Sumant, Anirban, Shiv’s and Nirmala — from a band called ‘Dastaan’ sang with “malicious intention of outraging the religious feelings of Hindu citizens”.
According to the IO, the complaint stated that the word ‘Om’ was used alongside abusive words like ‘Ullu ka Pattha’ in the lyrics. The musicians refused to comment or speak at the police station.
The complaint was filed by a Supreme Court advocate Venkata Krishna Kunduru after which the artists were called in for questioning and arrested around 2.30 pm, Gaonkar said. The artists were produced before a JFMC court and granted bail on depositing a surety of Rs 20,000. The court directed the singers to attend the probe and visit the police station when called for interrogation, Gaonkar said.
“We are now asking for footage from the organisers and will listen if they did say these words. Also, we will call witnesses to confirm if it hurt any sentiments,” he said.
According to the organisers of the festival, the performance was a “curated work” of several poems which already exist.
The artists have been booked under IPC section 295 (Injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class) which attracts a maximum punishment of three years.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines