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Delhi court grants bail to activist Disha Ravi in toolkit case

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A Delhi court on 23 February granted bail to 22-year-old climate activist Disha Ravi, who was arrested for allegedly trying to engineer chaos in the country in the name of supporting the agitating section of farmers in India.

“Considering the scanty and sketchy evidence on record, I do not find any palpable reason to breach the rule of bail for a 22-yeat-old girl who has absolutely no criminal antecedents,” the court said.

Delhi Police had accused Ravi of creating the toolkit – a Google document – in support of ongoing farmers’ protest in the country and claimed she is part of global conspiracy to create unrest and trigger violence in the guise of farmers’ stir against the three agriculture laws.

On 22 February, she was sent to one-day police custody after a three-day judicial remand and spending five days in police custody. Ravi was arrested on 13 February.

The police sought her custody again yesterday saying they want to confront Ravi with other accused in the case – activists Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Muluk. She was brought to Delhi Police Cyber Cell for the same earlier on 23 February.

Both Muluk and Jacob were booked for alleged sedition along with Ravi, but got transit bail from Bombay High Court. They were both on 22 February questioned at Delhi Police’s Cyber cell office in Dwarka, a senior police officer said. The probe agency said that they may arrest Jacob and Muluk as well in the future if there is a requirement.

Ravi volunteers for an called Fridays for Future (FFF) India, an organisation founded a couple of years ago by PR-promoted climate activist Greta Thunberg. She used to help with the organisation’s event management work in Bengaluru. Thunberg shared the contentious toolkit meant to spread anarchy on Twitter but later deleted it.

Thunberg, extending support to Ravi, then tweeted, “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.” The tweet was posted with the hashtag ‘StandWithDishaRavi’.

Meanwhile, Muluk on 23 February moved a Delhi court seeking anticipatory bail. His application is likely to come up for hearing Wednesday before Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana.

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