'Sulli Deals' mastermind arrested from Indore; family alleges conspiracy
A 25-year-old Indore man Aumkareshwar Thakur has been arrested by the Delhi Police for allegedly creating the controversial "Sulli Deals" app on Sunday. The app made headlines last July for auctioning Muslim women. Thakur was arrested from his Indore home by the Intelligence Fusion and Strategic Operations (IFSO) squad of the Delhi Police, IFSO Deputy Commissioner of Police KPS Malhotra said.
Why does it matter?
- This was the first arrest in the 'Sulli Deals' app case.
- The arrest was made on the basis of information revealed by the apprehended creator of a similar 'Bulli Bai' app—Niraj Bishnoi.
- Both applications were used to upload doctored images of Muslim women for auction without their consent and made derogatory remarks.
- The case has raised concerns over the safety of minorities and women.
Main mastermind behind 'Sulli Deals': Delhi Police
The police identified Thakur as the "main mastermind" behind the 'Sulli Deals' app. Thakur created the code for 'Sulli Deals' on GitHub and released the app on Twitter, the police said. Thakur—a resident of Indore's Newyork City Township—has a Bachelor of Computer Application degree from IPS Academy, they said. He has confessed to his involvement to "defame and troll Muslim women," they added.
How was 'Sulli Deals' set up?
The police said that Thakur revealed during questioning that he joined a Twitter group called 'Tradmahasabha' in January 2020. "He used the Twitter handle @gangescion," Malhotra told ThePrint. "During various group discussions, the members had discussed trolling Muslim community women." The police reportedly described him as "highly radicalized." Thakur allegedly used up to seven Twitter handles, including @Sigmatrad, and @Sullideals101, sources told ThePrint.
Family defends accused; alleges conspiracy
The accused's brother Mandleshwar Thakur told The Quint that Thakur used to work as a freelance web designer and developer. Mandleshwar said the two had had no social media presence for years. There had been no complaints against Thakur and a Muslim family in the neighborhood could vouch for that, he added. Thakur's father said his son was being framed.
Connection of 'Sulli Deals' and 'Bulli Bai'
The primary culprit in the 'Bulli Bai' case, Bishnoi, was also one of the promoters of the 'Sulli Deals' app, according to the Delhi Police. During interrogation, Bishnoi disclosed that he was in contact with the creator of the account @sullideals. Apart from Bishnoi, the Mumbai Police has arrested accused Vishal Kumar Jha, Shweta Singh, and Mayank Rawat, in the Bulli Bai case.