Mumbai Police’s cyber crime branch on Thursday arrested a 28-year-old man from Odisha in a case related to the “Bulli Bai” app on which more than 100 prominent Muslim women were put on “online auction”, PTI reported.
Neeraj Singh, an MBA degree holder, is the fifth person to be arrested in the case. The police have claimed that he was involved in planning the creation of the app along with with other accused persons.
Singh and four others have been accused of taking photos of the Muslim women from their social media accounts without permission and displayed them on the app for “sale” as “Bulli Bai” of the day. “Bulli” is a derogatory way to refer to Muslim women.
The app, which was hosted on web platform GitHub, has since taken it down following outrage on social media.
“His [Singh] role came to light during the interrogation of the accused who were arrested earlier, following which a team of the cyber police station was sent to Odisha and he was placed under arrest,” an unidentified official told PTI.
Last week, the court had denied bail to one of the accused persons, Neeraj Bishnoi, saying that his act was an “affront to the dignity of women of a particular community and communal harmony of society”.
At a hearing of bail plea of the three other accused, the Mumbai Police on Monday told a court that fake Sikh names had been used to target Muslim women on social media platforms to allegedly create enmity between the two communities.
‘Online auction’ of women
The “Bulli Bai” app was the second attempt in recent 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”.
The police in Noida and Delhi had registered separate cases in connection with the “Sulli Deals” app but had made no arrests till the “Bulli Bai” matter came to the fore earlier in January.
On January 9, the Delhi Police arrested Aumkareshwar Thakur, who allegedly created the “Sulli Deals” app. He is the first person to be arrested in the case.