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Can't jail citizens for disagreeing with state policy: Top quotes from Disha Ravi’s bail order

Feb 24, 2021 02:34 IST

A sessions court in Delhi while granting bail to 22 year old activist Disha Ravi, who was arrested in connection with a toolkit on the farmer protests, made some scathing remarks.

The court order comes as a blow to the Delhi Police, which had alleged that Disha Ravi was the “key conspirator” in editing and sharing the toolkit, a document that she collaborated with pro-Khalistani group Poetic Justice Foundation (PJF) to 'spread disaffection against Indian state'.

We'll take you through some of the top quotes from Disha Ravi's bail order.

1. In the bail order, Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana noted that the accused had “absolutely no criminal antecedents”. 
He said, “Considering the scanty and sketchy evidence available on record, I do not find any palpable reasons to breach the general rule of ‘bail’ against a 22-year-old girl, with absolutely blemish-free criminal antecedents and having firm roots in the society, and send her to jail.”


2. He added, “Citizens are conscience keepers of government in any democratic Nation. They cannot be put behind the bars simply because they choose to disagree with the State policies. The offence of sedition cannot be invoked to minister to the wounded vanity of the governments.”


3. He went to say, “an investigating agency can’t be permitted to further restrict the liberty of citizen on basis of propitious anticipations.”


4. The Court said, creation of a toolkit is not an offence. The judge said, "creation of a WhatsApp group or being editor of an innocuous Toolkit is not an offence. Further, since the link with the said toolkit or PJF has not been found to be objectionable, mere `deletion of the WhatsApp chat to destroy the evidence linking her with the toolkit and PJF, also becomes meaningless.”


5. The court added, that nothing on record suggested that Disha Ravi subscribed to any secessionist ideas.
The judge said, "It would be worthwhile to observe that there is nothing on record to suggest that the applicant accused subscribed to any secessionist idea. Further, the prosecution has, except for pointing out that applicant/accused forwarded the toolkit to Greta Thunberg, failed to point out as to how the applicant/accused gave global audience to the 'secessionist elements"

Additional Solicitor General SV Raju, who appeared for the Delhi police, alleged that the 'toolkit' was part of an international conspiracy to malign India by using the garb of farmers protests, and that the same was linked to the violence which took place in the national capital on the Republic Day during the tractor parade by protesting farmers.

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