‘Shocking, unwarranted harassment’: Cong leaders condemn activist Disha Ravi’s arrest in Toolkit case

Congress leaders on Sunday expressed their solidarity with 21-year-old climate activist from Bengaluru Disha Ravi, who was arrested by Delhi Police for allegedly editing and disseminating the “toolkit” on social media and sent to five days police custody.

A Delhi court on Sunday remanded Disha to five days police custody following her arrest in connection with allegedly spreading a “toolkit” related to the farmers’ protest. Duty Metropolitan Magistrate Dev Saroha of Patiala House Courts Complex allowed Delhi Police to quiz Ravi for five days. She was arrested on Saturday.

The Congress leaders have termed her arrest as “unwarranted harassment, unfortunate and shocking”.

Congress leader and Rajya Sabha member P Chidambaram in a series of tweets condemned the arrest and urged students to demand the release of Disha.

“The Indian state must be standing on very shaky foundations if Disha Ravi, a 22-year-old student of Mount Carmel College and a climate activist, has become a threat to the nation,” he said.

“A ‘tool kit’ to support the farmers’ protest is more dangerous than the intrusion by Chinese troops into Indian territory! India is becoming the theatre of the absurd and it is sad that the Delhi Police has become a tool of the oppressors,” he added.

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh, a former union minister termed the arrest as “completely atrocious”. “This is unwarranted harassment and intimidation. I express my full solidarity with Disha Ravi,” he tweeted.

Rajya Sabha MP and Congress leader Anand Sharma said, “Arrest of climate activist Disha Ravi is most unfortunate and shocking. Custodial interrogation of a young woman without any criminal antecedents cannot be justified. Police should recognise her right to liberty and courts must respect the Supreme Court Judgement which says bail is the rule and Jail an exception.”

Congress’ Lok Sabha MP and former union minister Shashi Tharoor termed her arrest as the latest escalation in India’s crackdown on free expression and political dissent

“Disha Ravi’s arrest is the latest escalation in India’s crackdown on free expression and political dissent as it seeks2stifle the farmers’ mass protests, says the [?]@dailytelegraph[?] UK. Doesn’t GoI care about the damage it is doing to its own global image?” he said.

According to the Delhi Police officials, Disha is a key lead in the “toolkit” case as she had admitted during the initial interrogation to editing, adding some things in the “toolkit” and spreading it further.

Last week, the Delhi Police sent a communication to Google seeking registration details and activity log of the account through which a “toolkit” related to the farmers’ protest was created and uploaded on the social media platform.

Two e-mail IDs, one Instagram account, and one Uniform Resource Locator (URL) were mentioned in the toolkit and police have asked for details from the respective platforms.The police had registered an FIR against unidentified persons in connection with the creators of the “toolkit’.

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