In connection with the alleged protest “toolkit” shared by Greta Thunberg to support farmers’ protests, the Delhi Police on Monday procured a non-bailable warrant from a local court here against lawyer-activist Nikita Jacob and activist Shantanu Muluk.
A lawyer practising at the Bombay High Court since 2014, Nikita has been volunteering for the environmental cause under Extinction Rebellion.
The warrant was issued a day after Bengaluru- based climate activist Disha Ravi was arrested by the Delhi Police in the toolkit case.
According to the Delhi Police, the Poetic Justice Foundation, the organisation allegedly behind Thunberg’s “toolkit”, had contacted Mumbai-based Nikita to organise a “tweet storm” ahead of the Republic Day protests by farmers. Delhi Police had earlier said that the foundation is believed to be working for the separatist Khalistani cause.
The police further revealed that an alleged Zoom meeting took place on 11 January, attended by Nikita and Shantanu and organised by the Poetic Justice Foundation, which the police deems as a ‘pro-Khalistani’ organisation, in which, "the modalities of the Global Day of Action were worked out".
On February 11, Delhi cyber cell police went to Nikita’s residence in Mumbai to carry out searches. However, the investigating officials could not question her as it was already evening by then. Nikita had promised to cooperate with the investigation.
Nikita had approached the Bombay High Court after the Delhi cybercrime unit raided her residence on February 11 and seized her computer and phone in connection with the toolkit which was allegedly authored by her and Disha. She had also asked for a copy of the FIR and has claimed that the Delhi Police came to her house in Mumbai on February 11 with a search warrant and seized gadgets and documents.
Nikita, who had applied for transit anticipatory bail, was granted protection from arrest for three weeks to enable her to approach the competent court or investigating officer by the Bombay high court on Wednesday.
Based on the facts, the court observed that the alleged offence is being investigated by the Delhi Police and the FIR is registered in Delhi. The court said it is “undisputed’ that she is a permanent resident of Mumbai and made herself available for interrogation.
While the plea was being argued, the court recorded that Nikita had no religious, political and financial intention to incite violence in Delhi on 26 January and that her house was raided on 11 February.
The court pronounced the verdict after having a look at the order passed by the Aurangabad Bench of the court, wherein co-accused Shantanu was granted the same relief.
Shantanu was granted transit anticipatory bail for 10 days by the Aurangabad Bench of the Bombay High Court in connection with the case on Tuesday.
(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)