On the 4th of July, a disturbing incident came to light in which images, names and Twitter handles of Muslim women were misused and women were ‘auctioned’ on the Sulli Deals app, allowing users to pick their ‘Deal of the day.’
The app was hosted by GitHub, a repository hosting website, and targeted more than 80 Muslim women, the majority of them belonging to India. It was taken down soon after it received widespread backlash from netizens on social media.
A Horrific Incident
On Sunday, many Indian Muslim women were shocked to see their names and images put up for auction on the Sulli Deals app, attributing them as ‘Deal of the Day.’
The app mostly targeted prolific Muslim women including journalists, analysts, researchers, and artists.
This horrific incident came into light when a Twitter user named ‘K’ tweeted about seeing her name and image, along with many other Muslim women, on Sulli Deals website with the title ‘Your Sulli deal of the day is.’ ‘Sulli’ is a derogatory slang used to address Muslim women in India.
Soon after that several other women came forward to speak up about their horrifying experience of ‘being publicly sold’ on an online platform.
The Sulli Deals App
Sulli Deals, an app created on GitHub, described itself as a “community-driven open source project” and aimed to harass Muslim women from different nations.
The app would ask the users to click on the option ‘Find your Sulli deal of the day’ and then display the picture of a random girl denoting her as ‘your Sulli deal of the day.’
The app continued with its activity of ‘putting Muslim women on sale’ for about 20 days, after which it was taken down, as confirmed by Erica Brescia, Chief Operating Officer, GitHub via Twitter.
The mastermind and the creator of the app is yet to be ascertained.
Outrage On Social Media
The women who were made the victim of this Sulli deal incident also took to social media to share their experiences, expressing their anger about the same.
Reactions Of Victims
Many victims took legal action against the crime by filing FIR in the cybercrime branch and complaint to National Commission for Women (NCW).
While others thought of taking no action against the crime after getting discouraged by the low conviction rates of similar incidents.
This is not the first time Muslim women have been targeted. A similar incident took place last year a few days ahead of Eid-ul-Fitr when an Indian YouTuber called ‘Liberal Doge’ passed misleading comments on the Eid pictures of Muslim women in his YouTube video.
His video was removed from YouTube after receiving criticism from the audience.
The Boys Locker Room incident in which obscene images of girls were shared on a group with a motive to objectify them, is also one of the many cases when women’s safety was put into danger online.
Cyberspace Has Become Unsafe For Women
With increasing cyber crimes against women in recent years, it is not wrong to say that cyberspace has become unsafe for women.
It has become a breeding ground for cyber crimes like harassment, cyberbullying, and blackmailing.
These incidents call for the need for stringent laws to curb cyber crimes against women in India and across the world.
Image Credits: Google images
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