NEW DELHI: Mahmood Farooqui is a writer, artist and director. He specializes in an art of story-telling known as Dastangoi. Farooqui began reinventing Dastangoi, Urdu oral storytelling art form, in 2005. He is also the co-director of the feature film Peepli Live (2010). He is the author of Besieged- Voices from Delhi 1857.
In 2016, Farooqui was accused of raping a 35-year-old woman from Columbia University who was in India for research on her doctoral thesis.
The woman, who moved to Delhi in June 2014, was looking for contacts for her work in Gorakhpur and came in contact with Farooqui through a common friend.
The alleged incident occurred on March 28, 2015 when Farooqui invited her for dinner at his house.
A trial court had on August 4 last year sent him to jail for seven years, observing that he had taken advantage of the situation when the victim was alone in his house.
(Video: Jun 21, 2015)
The court, which on July 30, 2016 had held Farooqui guilty, had also imposed a fine of Rs 50,000 on him.
The police had on June 19, 2015, lodged the FIR against Farooqui on the woman's complaint after which he was arrested.
On July 29, 2015, the police had filed its charge sheet against Farooqui alleging he had raped the research scholar from Columbia University at his Sukhdev Vihar house in South Delhi on March 28, 2015.
Farooqui had challenged the trial court order in the High Court claiming his innocence.
The Delhi High Court on Monday acquitted Farooqui. Justice Ashutosh Kumar set aside the trial court order convicting Farooqui and sentencing him to seven years jail in August last year.
(With inputs from agencies)