Indian politicians and activists on Monday condemned the arrest of a 22-year-old climate campaigner accused of sedition for helping edit an online document that Sweden’s Greta Thunberg had promoted in support of farmers protesting in the country.
Thunberg had shared a “toolkit” or an action plan on Twitter which listed ways to help Indian farmers, who have been protesting agricultural reforms.
Over the weekend, police brought Disha Ravi, a leader of the Indian arm of Thunberg’s climate crisis-related Fridays for Future movement, to the capital from her home in the southern city of Bengaluru to question her. Thunberg said she had no comment on the detention of Ravi.
Police said the arrest was part of an investigation into how a group of farmers stormed the historic Red Fort on the occasion of India’s republic day last month.
“The main aim of the ‘toolkit’ was to create misinformation and disaffection against the lawfully enacted government,” Delhi police official Prem Nath told reporters.
Police have registered a case of sedition and criminal conspiracy. The colonial-era sedition law carries a penalty of life sentence.