Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana of Patiala House Courts put up the bail application of 21-year-old climate activist Disha Ravi, for orders on February 23, reported LiveLaw. The Additional Solicitor General, SV Raju, appeared for the Delhi Police and Advocate Siddharth Agarwal represented Disha Ravi.
The ASG SV Raju, opposed her bail plea and submitted that Disha Ravi was in contact with pro-Khalistani organisations “Sikhs For Justice” and “Poetic Justice Foundation”, and created a toolkit to incite hatred against India by supporting the farmers’ protest. The ASG said that Disha tried to delete the electronic records of her chats and documents, and this suggested a “prima facie guilty mind”.
ASJ Rana asked SV Raju if there was any evidence on record to link the January 26 violence with the toolkit in question. He asked, “What exactly is the evidence collected by you against this lady connecting her to the violence perpetuated on Jan 26? Is there any evidence, or are we required to merely work on surmises, conjectures?”, tweeted LiveLaw.
To this, ASG responded that the conspiracy is not something which can be “seen or touched” and it has to be gathered from the circumstances. He reportedly said, “The conspiracy is not that I knew a particular person and told them to commit violence, but that I created a document which I knew and intended to incite violence. The conspiracy is in the meeting of the minds”.
When the judge asked him if she should assume at this stage that there is no direct link between the two, SV Raju submitted that the police are investigating this issue. He also mentioned that the toolkit has been “very cleverly designed”, with mentions of Kashmir and material which has nothing to do with Farmers’ protests. “It talks about the cutting off of the internet in Kashmir, the crushing of Kashmir’s right to self-determination by Indian Army,” he said.
The court said that it will read the document in detail. Then, ASG SV Raju also argued that before the Republic Day violence, the accused and other people prepared templates with certain details to be shared on social media to amplify the protest and indulge in anti-national activities.
According to LiveLaw, after SV Raju’s submissions, Siddharth Agarwal contended that Delhi Police has yet not indicated a single conversation between Sikhs For Justice and Disha. “They don’t even say that Sikhs For Justice organization is connected to Poetic Justice Foundation”, he said.
Agarwal: They have not indicated a single conversation between Sikhs For Justice and her. They don’t even say that Sikhs For Justice organization is connected to Poetic Justice Foundation.#DishaRavi#Toolkit
— Live Law (@LiveLawIndia) February 20, 2021
Agarwal further argued that organising peaceful protests is not seditious. “If the offence is that I protested peacefully, I’m guilty, if the offence is that I advertised about this peaceful protest, I’m guilty. If this is the parameter, I’m definitely guilty”, he remarked. Continuing on the point of sedition, he stated that the FIR mentions that Ravi attacked Chai (tea) and yoga. “Is this the parameter for sedition?”, he asked.
Agarwal: For instance, if there is yoga. And I prefer kung fu over yoga. Will I become a chinese spy? I’m not saying this. It’s in their FIR. We’re reducing the bar of someone having a different point of view. #DishaRavi#Toolkit
— Live Law (@LiveLawIndia) February 20, 2021
“The upshot of 124A is an utterance or communication. If the communication here is of the Toolkit, there is no disaffection in the Toolkit. Neither on a plain reading, nor on a reading through the ASG’s eyes”, he said sternly.
According to LiveLaw, Siddharth Agarwal referred to ASG SV Raju’s submissions and asked if mentioning the Kashmir Pandit exodus amounts to sedition. “If this is sedition, then we should shut down the internet, go back to the era when there was only one Doordarshan TV,” he remarked.
He further argued that international activist Greta Thunberg tweeted only in support of the farmers’ protest and there is no larger conspiracy to defame India. The court asked the Delhi Police on the “chai and yoga point”. To this, the Police submitted that, “The name itself means a kit. The kit doesn’t target only yoga and chai, it targets India’s symbols”.
The court directed the parties to make the entire toolkit available to it and reserved orders for February 23.
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