Online auction’ of Muslim women: Mumbai Police detain engineering student from Bengaluru

The police have not revealed the 21-year-old’s identity.
The Mumbai Police on Monday detained a 21-year-old engineering student from Bengaluru in connection with a new app on which more than 100 prominent Muslim women were listed for an “online auction”, ANI reported.
The police have not revealed the man’s identity.

The open source app, “Bulli Bai”, was hosted on web platform GitHub, which has since taken it down following outrage on social media. Photos of the women were taken from their social media accounts without permission and displayed on the app for “sale” as “Bulli Bai” of the day.

Maharashtra minister and Congress leader Satej Patel on Monday said that Mumbai Police had
Though we cannot disclose the details at this moment as it may hamper the ongoing investigation, I would like to assure all the victims that we are proactively chasing the culprits and they will face the law very soon,” he said in a tweet.

This was the second attempt in months to harass Muslim women in the country by “auctioning” them online.

In July, an app called “Sulli Deals” had posted hundreds of images of Muslim women and described them as “deals of the day”. Both “Bulli” and “Sulli” are derogatory words used to refer to Muslim women.

The police in Noida and Delhi had registered separate cases in connection with the “Sulli Deals” app but no arrests have been made so far.

On Sunday, the Mumbai and Delhi police had registered a first information report against unknown culprits under Indian Penal Code Sections 153A (promoting enmity between groups based on religion), 153B (assertions that damage national integrity), 354A (punishment for sexual harassment), and 509 (insult to modesty of a woman) for the “Bulli Bai” auction.

Additionally, the Mumbai Police had also invoked Indian Penal Code Sections 295A (malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings) and 500 (defamation) and Section 67 (punishment for publishing lewd content) of the Information Technology Act.

Meanwhile, the Delhi Commission For Women on Monday wrote to the police, asking why no accused person was still arrested in the “Sulli Deals” matter.

The women’s commission described the lack of action as “a callous attitude of the law enforcement agency”. The commission also asked about steps taken by the police to make sure that such content is not posted on any platform.

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