New Delhi: Climate activist Disha Ravi’s bail plea in the ‘Toolkit’ case in Delhi Court ended on Friday and the court said it will on February 23 pronounce its order in the bail application. Additional Sessions Judge Dharmendra Rana of Patiala House Court heard the arguments of both the prosecution and defence for more than three hours and reserved the matter for Tuesday.Also Read - No Surprise my Autonomy Was Violated by Seekers of TRP: Disha Ravi Releases Statement
Earlier, the 21-year-old activist was sent to three days judicial custody, after the police told the court they will seek her custody later to confront her with co-accused Shantanu Mukul, who will join the probe on February 22. Also Read - 'Creating Toolkit Not an Offence': 5 Big Statements by Court as Disha Ravi Walks Out of Jail
During the hearing, Disha Ravi’s lawyer told the court that there is no evidence to show that the toolkit on farmers’ protest is responsible for the violence on January 26. “If highlighting farmers’ protest globally is sedition, I’m better in jail,” Ravi said through her counsel on Saturday. Also Read - Toolkit Case: Climate Activist Disha Ravi Gets Bail After 10 Days, Can't Leave Country Till Probe Ends
Ravi’s counsel was submitting arguments after the Delhi Police opposed her bail plea, alleging she was preparing the toolkit with those advocating Khalistan and was part of a global conspiracy to defame India and create unrest in the country in the garb of farmers’ protest.
A Delhi court heard the bail plea of 21-year-old climate activist Disha Ravi, accused in the ‘toolkit’ case. During the course of proceedings, the Delhi Police told the court that somehow this toolkit got leaked on social media and was available in the public domain, the deletion of the same was planned and performed. Moreover, it claimed that Sikhs for Justice, a banned organisation had announced on January 11 a reward for anyone who hoists the Khalistani flag on India Gate, Red Fort.
“Vancouver is a hotbed for anti-India activities with regard to Khalistan”, said Delhi police adding that an organisation named Kisan Ekta company is in touch with another organisation in Vancouver.
Yesterday, the court had sent her three-day judicial custody in connection with the case. She was produced before the court amid high security at the end of her five-day police custody. The climate activist was arrested from Bengaluru on February 13 in connection with allegedly editing and sharing a ‘toolkit’ on social media related to the farmers’ protest.
What happened in court yesterday?
The Delhi Police told Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Akash Jain that Ravi has been evasive in giving replies during the interrogation and shifted the blame onto co-accused Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Muluk. The police requested the court to send her to three-day judicial custody, as they have served a notice to co-accused Shantanu, who will join the investigation on February 22, following which both will be confronted.
“She has been evasive in giving replies. We have served notice to co-accused Shantanu who will be joining the investigation on February 22. She has to be confronted with co-accused,” Public Prosecutor Irfan Ahmed told the court. Furthermore, he said,”During the course of interrogation, Disha Ravi has shifted the blame on Nikita and Shantanu. All the accused need to be confronted with one another. That’s why three days judicial custody is being sought.”
Delhi Police’s Allegations Against Disha Ravi
On February 14, the Delhi Police took to microblogging website Twitter to elaborate on the case. It wrote, “Disha Ravi, arrested by Delhi Police, is an Editor of the Toolkit Google Doc and key conspirator in document’s formulation and dissemination.”
She started WhatsApp Group and collaborated to make the Toolkit document, the police said, adding that she worked closely with them to draft it. “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,” the police wrote on Twitter.
Greta Thunberg Extends Support
Extending support to Disha Ravi, Greta Thunberg on Saturday said that freedom of speech and the right to peaceful protest are non-negotiable human rights. “Freedom of speech and the right to peaceful protest and assembly are non-negotiable human rights. These must be a fundamental part of any democracy. #StandWithDishaRavi,” Greta Thunberg wrote in a tweet.
What is a Toolkit document?
A document that provides online resources to frontline staff to learn about an issue and identify approaches for addressing them is called a toolkit. Various urgent actions, including creating a Twitter storm and protesting outside Indian embassies, were listed (which were needed to be taken to support the farmers protest) in the document shared by popular climate activist Greta Thunberg on Twitter.