Disha sent to one day in police custody, to be confronted with Nikita, Shantanu
New Delhi, February 22, 2021
A Delhi court on Monday sent climate activist Disha Ravi to one-day police custody in connection with the "Toolkit" case, during which she will be confronted with co-accused Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Muluk.
Ravi faces charges of conspiracy and sedition in the case that is related to the farmers' agitation and the Republic Day violence in the national capital during the farmers tractor rally, and was arrested from Bengaluru on February 13.
After her arrest, Ravi was first sent to five days' police custody, followed by three days of judicial custody.
The climate activist was produced before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Pankaj Sharma of the Patiala House Court at the end of her three-day judicial custody, amid high security.
The police sought five days' remand of Ravi to confront her with co-accused Jacob and Muluk. "She has shifted the burden to other accused. I have to confront her with them," the prosecutor told the court.
Jacob and Muluk joined the investigation at Delhi Police's Cyber Cell office in Dwarka, earlier on Monday. They were issued a notice to join the probe last week.
Advocate Siddharth Agarwal, representing the accused, told the court that her police custody is not required and that she can be confronted with the duo while being in jail.
"These days, investigation is through virtual conference links also. It is not the law that police custody can be granted on asking. Remand ought to be granted on real necessity," he told the court.
The prosecutor argued that there is no set formula for grant of bail and each case has to be seen on its own merit. "Police custody is not punishment. Fourteen days' custody is our right. This may be advantageous to her. She's shifting blame."
The police further said that it is a transnational and complex case. "Our endeavour is to finish the investigation as soon as possible," the court was told.
The Delhi Police have contended that the Google document tweeted by Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg to back the farmers' protest and then deleted, was created by Ravi and two other activists -- Jacob and Muluk.
The toolkit is a series of guidelines suggesting how a particular aim can be achieved. Toolkits chart out plans of action explaining topics at hand and offer suggestions that could be followed to achieve particular goals.
The order on Ravi's bail application will be pronounced on Tuesday. During the three-hour-long bail hearing on February 20, the police said that the Toolkit was a sinister design to defame India and cause violence.
"Poetic Justice Foundation and Sikhs For Justice in order to hide their involvement, used Disha Ravi as a front to carry out nefarious activity," Additional Solicitor General S.V. Raju told the court, adding that these organisations are connected to the Khalistan movement.
The Delhi Police further told the city court that Ravi covered her tracks and deleted evidence like contents of the Toolkit and a WhatsApp group, which the public prosecutor emphasised shows her "guilty mind".