NEW DELHI: Delhi Police's Cyber Cell arrested 22-year-old climate activist Disha Ravi during a raid on her Bengaluru home. The BBA graduate Disha has been charged with sedition, criminal conspiracy and other charges for her alleged role in the farm protest "toolkit". The "toolkit" was shared on Twitter by Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg.
Disha has been remanded in five days police custody. Delhi Police has alleged that the "toolkit" has been made in collaboration with pro-Khalistani Poetic Justice Foundation to malign India and cause disruptions within the country.
"Disha Ravi, arrested by CyPAD unit of Delhi Police, is an Editor of the Toolkit Google Doc & key conspirator in document's formulation & dissemination. She started WhatsApp Group & collaborated to make the Toolkit doc. She worked closely with them to draft the doc," Delhi Police said in a statement tweeted on Sunday.
"In this process, they all collaborated with pro-Khalistani Poetic Justice Foundation to spread disaffection against the Indian State. She was the one who shared the Toolkit Doc with Greta Thunberg," it said.
The police seized her electronic gadgets, including her mobile phone and laptops. She has been booked under sedition (IPC Section 124A) and intent to provoke rioting (Section 153), along with charges such as promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, place of birth, race and language (153A) and criminal conspiracy (120B).
After Disha Ravi's arrest, a Delhi court has issued non-bailable warrants against activists Nikita Jacob and Shantanu in connection with Delhi Police's interrogation into the Greta Thunberg toolkit case.
The arrest warrant against activist-lawyer Nikita Jacob came hours after Disha was remanded into five days of police custody.
According to reports, a non-bailable warrant was issued against Nikita Jacob by a Delhi court on Monday at the request of Delhi Police, who claimed that the activist-lawyer is absconding. A team went to search Nikita Jacob's house on February 11. Officials claimed that the tea, could not question Nikita since they arrived at her home around evening.
According to reports, Nikita signed documents saying she will join the investigation. Delhi Police sources have however claimed that she has been absconding after the special cell's visit to her house.
Nikita Jacob has reportedly moved to the Bombay High Court on February 12 for interim protection against the police action. The hearing for the matter has been scheduled for February 16.
As per reports, Nikita Jacob mentioned in documents attached in her application before the High Court that a team arrived to search her house on February 11. The cops interrogated Nikita Jacob for over 13 hours, recorded her statement and seized hard disk, pen drives from her house, the plea added.
A warrant against activist Shantanu was also issued in connection with the Delhi Police investigation in the toolkit case.
Disha Ravi's arrest has created a flurry of protests against the Delhi Police and the incumbent BJP government. Activists, international public figures and politicians are pouring in support for the young activist.
Delhi Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal took to Twitter to condemn Disha's arrest.
CPI leader, Sitaram Yechury took to Twitter to condemn the young activist's arrest will only strengthen India's struggle for democracy.
Congress leaders Chidambaram, Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Shashi Tharoor, Jairam Ramesh, Supriya Shrinate, and Kapil Sibal too condemned the arrest and took to Twitter to protest against Disha's arrest.
Shiv Sena's Priyanka Chaturvedi too criticised Disha's arrest.
Canadian poet Rupi Kaur has been actively sharing tweets condemning the arrest of Disha as well as Dalit activist Navdeep Kaur. Kaur's tweet has been shared by many activists, including Meena Harris, American Vice President Kamala Harris' niece. Notably, Meena Harris has seen widespread trolling for speaking out in support of the farmers' protests.
Advocate Rebecca John took to Facebook to talk about the abandonment of judicial duties when Disha was produced without a lawyer present, calling it a violation of Article 22 of the Constitution. Supreme Court lawyer Karuna Nandy also tweeted condemning the arrest.
Several artists, journalists and activists such as TM Krishna, Kavita Krishnan, Aishe Ghosh, and others have tweeted asking for the release of the 21-year-old climate activist, Disha, saying that the toolkit was not a conspiracy, but a routine part of planning peaceful protests and digital activism.
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