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Toolkit case: Mumbai court to hear activists Nikita Jacob, Shantanu Muluk’s anticipatory bail pleas today

The anticipatory bail pleas of Mumbai-based lawyer Nikita Jacob and engineer Shantanu Mulud, who have non-bailable warrants issued against them by a Delhi court in connection with the toolkit case, will be heard today by Bombay High Court.

Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Mulk on Monday moved the Aurangabad bench of the Bombay High Court seeking transit anticipatory bail after they were named as suspects in a case filed by the Delhi police with regard to the “toolkit” shared by climate activist Greta Thunberg over the farmers’ protest.

Both the pleas sought transit anticipatory bail for a period of four weeks so that the applicants — Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Muluk — can approach the court concerned in Delhi to apply for pre-arrest bail.

While Shantanu Muluk’s petition in Aurangabad, listed on bottom of the board, will come up for hearing by evening, Nikita Jacob’s plea will be ehard after 2pm.

Nikita Jacob and Shantanu Muluk, both Maharashtra residents, filed separate pleas in the high court. Delhi Police has so far arrested one person for interrogation in connection with the Greta Thunberg “toolkit” case. Disha Ravi was “picked up” from her house in Bengaluru on Sunday.

Disha Ravi, who was later remanded to five-day Delhi Police Special Cell custody by the Patiala House court in Delhi, has been accused of editing and sharing the toolkit related to farmers’ protest with Greta Thunberg who then shared it on her Twitter handle, garnering huge international support and attention to the protests.

According to Delhi Police, climate activist Disha Ravi, Mumbai lawyer Nikita Jacob and Pune engineer Shantanu Muluk created the “toolkit” related to the farmers’ agitation and shared it with others to tarnish India’s image.

Delhi Police had on February 4 registered a case against the “pro-Khalistan” creators of a “toolkit”, which was shared by teen climate activist Greta Thunberg and others on Twitter in connection with the farmers’ protest, alleging it aimed to wage a “social, cultural and economic war against the Government of India”.

POLITICAL VENDETTA: NIKITA JACOB IN PLEA

Nikita Jacob moved the Bombay High Court for interim protection against the police action on Monday. In her plea, Nikita Jacob’s has claimed that the police officials, who searched her house on February 11, questioned her for 13 hours. Delhi Police Special Cell sources have, however, claimed that Nikita Jacob wasn’t questioned since the team arrived at her house around evening.

The cops questioned Nikita Jacob for over 13 hours, recorded her statement and seized hard disk, pen drives from her house, the plea added.

Nikita Jacob said she was not even aware whether she was an accused person or a witness as her name was nowhere mentioned. She has been practising in the Bombay High Court since 2014. Anticipating arrest, Nikita Jacob moved the Bombay HC on February 12.

Delhi Police sources claimed the activist-lawyer, however, signed documents, saying she will join the investigation but went underground after the special cell’s visit to her house.

DESTRUCTIVE FOR LIFE: SHANTANU MULUK IN PLEA

Shantanu Muluk, in his plea filed through advocate Satej Jadhav, said he and others are not actual dissenters but have only come out in support of farmers agitating on Delhi borders for more than two months now against the Centre’s new agri-marketing laws.

Shantanu stated in the petition that the charges against him “will be destructive for his life and his family to carry a false blot of being an anti-national“.

The petition states that Delhi Police has stationed itself in Beed, which is his native town, for the past three days and seized several material without following due process of law. Shantanu alleged that the police team was “exerting undue pressure on his old parents using strong-arm tactics”.

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