Fake Disha Ravi Accounts Surface Post Her Arrest in ‘Toolkit’ Case
Here’s a look at a few Twitter accounts that have come up claiming to be climate activist Disha Ravi.
Climate activist Disha Ravi was arrested by the Special Cell of the Delhi Police from Bengaluru on Saturday, 13 February, on charges of ‘sharing and spreading’ a toolkit on the farmers’ protest that was posted by international green activist Greta Thunberg.
Since Ravi’s arrest, several Twitter handles impersonating her have cropped up, which claim to be run by her sister or a friend.
However, we spoke with a friend of Ravi's and found that none of the accounts that were found on Twitter were Ravi’s original account and she is an only child and has no sister.
ACCOUNT 1: @climatedisha
The account by the name of ‘@climatedisha’ was created in January 2021.
Following Ravi’s arrest, the handle posted tweets posing as her sister and said that other accounts in her name are fake. The tweet went viral and was liked by over 22,000 people at the time of publishing this story.
However, Ravi’s friend told The Quint that she was an only child and hence, it could not have been her sister. The friend also told us that the accounts claiming to be that of Ravi’s were not her original accounts.
Prajwal Bhat, a journalist with The News Minute also tweeted and said that according to Disha's friends, ‘@climatedisha’ was not her account.
The account was deleted for a short while on 15 February but was back up in no time.
ACCOUNT 2: @DISHARAVI21
Another account by the name ‘@DISHARAVI21’ was created on 14 February 2021 and claimed to be Ravi’s official handle. The user name for the account read, “#1 DISHA RAVI official Account Climate Activist IN”. The user has requested and tagged Twitter multiple times asking the company to verify the account.
The account has posted 60 tweets while this story was being written and most of them were retweets of verified handles tweeting about the activist’s arrest. Congress politician Shashi Tharoor also fell for this fake account and tagged it in one of his tweets.
It is pertinent to note that Ravi was arrested by the Delhi Police's cyber crime cell on Saturday, 13 February, and the account was created a day later.
We also spotted several other accounts in her name that claimed to be the activist. These accounts, however, didn’t have any tweets or followers when this story was written. The Quint could not independently verify who was running any of these accounts.
We also came across a post from 2020 in which Fridays for Future Deutschland had tagged “@disharavii” as her account. However this account has now been removed. Her account was also mentioned in an article published on The Correspondent in October 2020.
We also found old mentions of the account on Twitter.
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