Ramnagesh Akubathini, the man who was booked for posting rape threats to actor Anushka Sharma and cricketer Virat Kohli‘s daughter Vamika, was remanded to police custody for five days by a Mumbai court on Thursday, Bar and Bench reported.
The 23-year-old software engineer was produced before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Court at Esplanade, Mumbai. He was remanded to police custody till Monday (November 15), after the public prosecutor informed the court that Akubathini had constantly altered his profile on social media to troll the cricketer before he could be tracked down.
The accused had allegedly issued rape threats to nine-month-old Vamika when Kohli expressed support for bowler Mohammed Shami after the Indian team’s loss to Pakistan in the ICC T20 World Cup. The now-deleted Twitter account @Criccrazyygirl had written the rape threat and later changed their username to identify as a Pakistani resident after the tweet went viral.
According to the Bar and Bench report, Akubathini is a state topper and a graduate from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Hyderabad. On Wednesday, Mumbai Police had intercepted the accused in Hyderabad, where he was working as a software engineer. The arrest was made after the Cyber wing of Mumbai Police had registered a case based on a complaint by Kohli’s manager.
Akubathini has been booked under Sections 354 A (outraging modesty), 506 (criminal intimidation), and 500 (defamation) of the Indian Penal Code, along with Sections 67 and 67 B of the Information Technology Act (IT Act) for publishing obscene and sexually explicit material against children.
According to the report, if convicted, the maximum punishment for committing the offences would be imprisonment of up to five years and/or a fine up to Rs 10 lakhs under the IT Act.
Post Akubathini’s arrest, actor Farhan Akhtar took to Twitter and wrote, “I’m really glad to hear the Mumbai Police cyber cell have located and arrested the creep who tweeted rape threats to a child. Now hoping for similar swift action in cases of female journalists who receive rape threats almost on a daily basis.”
After the incident, the Delhi Commission for Women had also taken suo motu cognisance of online rape threats and sought details of cases registered by the Delhi Police in light of the threats.