The atrocities towards religious minorities, especially Muslims have seen its peak during the last few years in the country. This has been recently sparked by the infamous Bulli Bai and Sulli Deals incident. While the apparent culprit behind the case has been arrested, there is still a bigger community that remains under the cover.
What Exactly Are ‘Bulli Bai’ And ‘Sulli Deals’?
For the ones who are unaware, Bulli Bai is best described as a basic but malicious and cruel tech tool that was built with one express objective in mind: harassing women.
Bulli Bai is not an app because it is not available for download from an app store such as the Apple iOS App Store or the Google Play Store. It couldn’t even be downloaded or installed on a computer, therefore it’s not a standard computer app.
What was it if it wasn’t an app? Bulli Bai was a GitHub repository of code. It was executable, just like a gallery, thus it worked like an app. It was, however, a rather simple coding.
The goal was not to give any functionality in the traditional sense. The goal was to harass and scare Muslim women by compiling their personal information and images (from social media sites) in one location and applying a “price tag” to them.
Bulli Bai was founded in November of last year and updated on New Year’s Eve to put hundreds of Muslim women up for auction on the internet. According to sources, the app’s images belonged to Muslim women who were active on social media including prominent artists, journalists and activists.
This isn’t the first time a tool like this has been developed and shared on GitHub.
In July 2021, Sulli Deals, a similar project, was published to GitHub, ‘Sulli’ being a derogatory term used to refer to Muslim women. It provoked criticism on social media and prompted Delhi Police to investigate. However, no one was detained and the case came to a close until 9th January 2022 when the creator was finally arrested.
Also Read: ‘I Am The Real Creator’: Twitter User Claims To Be Behind The Bulli Bai App Says He Will Surrender If “Someone Arranges For Flight”
The Accused’s Statement
Aumkareshwar Thakur, the man accused of creating the Sulli Deals app on GitHub, told authorities that the idea for the app came from a Twitter ‘Trad’ group.
He was detained in Indore by the Delhi Police’s IFSO (Intelligence Fusion and Strategic Operations) squad. His arrest came as a result of a tip from Niraj Bishnoi, the suspected author of the Bulli Bai app, who disclosed that he was in contact with Aumkareshwar Thakur during the investigation.
Thakur admitted during the preliminary interrogation that he was a member of a ‘trad’ Twitter group where the notion to target and disparage Muslim women was introduced.
According to the police, he used the Twitter handle @gangescion to join the ‘trad’ group ‘Treadmahasabha’ in January 2020.
What Is ‘Trad’?
Trad, a short form for ‘traditionalists,’ is a term used on Twitter to describe the adherents of a particular viewpoint.
The word has recently gained traction in the context of the Bulli Bai and Sulli Deals instances, in which images of many Muslim women were uploaded to apps without their permission for a virtual “auction.”
Some of the Trad accounts they tracked during the inquiry were discovered to be participating in online harassment and hate speech, according to sources inside Delhi Police’s Cyber Unit, which keeps a careful eye on social media.
How Did It Inspire The Sulli Deals Case?
According to Delhi Police sources, a Trad organisation known as ‘Hindumahasabha’ was used to spread hate speech against a specific minority, and the Sulli Deals app’s inventor received the idea for the app from this group.
Aumkareshwar Thakur removed all of his social media fingerprints after the controversy over the Sulli Deals scandal.
In the claimed tweet he challenged law enforcement agents. Niraj Bishnoi, the primary accused in the Bulli Bai case, also labelled himself as a ‘trad.’
The investigation into both cases is still ongoing, led by DCP IFSO Unit KPS Malhotra, with the goal of further analysing the technological device and locating the codes/images associated with the Sulli Deals app.
Thus the “virtual auction” is nothing but one of the several elements fuelling the rising communal hatred in the country today. What other forms of communal hatred and violence would you like to be thrown light upon? Let us know in the comments down below!
Disclaimer: This article is fact-checked
Sources: India Today, The Print +more
Image Source: Google Images
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This post is tagged under Bulli Bai, Sulli Deals, islam, women, feminism, communalism, communal hatred, religious bigotry, Aumkareshwar Thakur, Niraj Bishnoi, Delhi Police, IFSO, KPS Malhotra
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