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Farmers’ Protest: Delhi Police Issue Clarification, Say FIR Not Filed Against Greta Thunberg But Against Toolkit Creators

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Left: Indian Farmers Protest (Licensed under CCA 2.0 Generic) Right: Greta Thunberg (Source: Wikipedia)

The Delhi Police issued a clarification stating that their First Information Report (FIR) was not filed against Greta Thunberg, the teenage environmental activist, but against the creators of “toolkit” that was shared by her along with her tweet of “solidarity” with India’s ongoing farmers’ protest.

On Thursday, media reports suggested that an FIR might be filed against Thunberg but the Delhi Police clarified that they have not named anyone in the FIR, NDTV reported.

Thunberg was one of the international icons, along with pop star Rihanna, adult film actor Mia Khalifa, American lawyer-author and US Vice President Kamala Harris’ cousin Meena Harris, and several other international journalists, professors and authors, to raise concerns and support the protesting Indian farmers, drawing global attention to the issue.

Thunberg attached a “toolkit” in her tweet thread on Wednesday which she later deleted. On Thursday, she posted an updated “toolkit” and wrote: “Here’s an updated toolkit by people on the ground in India if you want to help. (They removed their previous document as it was outdated.).”

The updated toolkit contains information on the ongoing farmers’ protest, the “urgent” and “prior” actions that can be taken to help and support them, such as suggestions about signing petitions, mailing government officials, trending hashtags #StandWithFarmers and #FarmersProtest or protesting in front of government offices and Indian embassies.

Following a major outrage against the international attention on the issue by the right-wing supporters terming it as “external forces” on the internet, the Ministry of External Affairs issued a notice on Wednesday mentioning that some “vested interest groups” who had “enforced their (farmers’) agenda” and “derailed” them that led to the Republic Day violence in the capital are the ones who are trying to “mobilise international support against India”.

According to the NDTV report, the “toolkit” that Thunberg uploaded on Wednesday was focused on the Republic day protests that saw agitating farmers clashing violently with the Delhi Police.

“Delhi Police has taken cognizance of a toolkit document found on a social media handle that predates and indicates a copycat execution of a conspiracy behind the January 26 violence. The call was to wage economic, social, cultural and regional war against India,” said Delhi Police Special Commissioner Praveer Ranjan, referring to the Republic Day tractor rally.

“We have registered a case for spreading disaffection against the government of India – it’s regarding sedition – and disharmony between groups on religious, social and cultural grounds, and criminal conspiracy to give shape to such a plan,” Ranjan said.

When NDTV sought a clarification on whether Thunberg was named in the FIR, Ranjan said that they have not named anyone and that the FIR was against the “creators of the toolkit”, which they said was created by an organisation “calling itself the Poetic Justice Foundation, a Khalistani group”.

Following the FIR, Thunberg wrote on Twitter that she still stands with the protesting farmers.

Members of right-wing organisation United Hindu Front took to out a protest march against Thunberg, Meena Harris and Rihanna in New Delhi on Thursday.

Meena Harris responded to the protests and tweeted: “I spoke out in support of human rights for Indian farmers, and look at the response.”

She shared journalist Rana Ayyub’s tweet that said: “The kind of hate, misogyny, threats, abuse I have seen on my timeline in the last two days is something I have never witnessed before (Given that I am immune to the worst possible trolling on social media). If this is not intimidation, I don’t know what is.”

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