Outrage when Muslim women were listed on the app for “auction” with pictures again


Bulli Bai App: The goal is to degrade, humiliate and harass, said some of its targets. (representative)

New Delhi:

Complaints about hundreds of Muslim women listed for “auction” on a risky app with photographs downloaded without permission have sparked a major controversy for the second time in less than a year.

Delhi police said they were investigating a case brought by journalist Ismat Ara, while Priyanka Chaturvedi, a Member of Parliament from Maharashtra’s ruling Shiv Sena, said an investigation had also been launched in Mumbai.

Mumbai’s cyber police have launched an investigation into the offensive content on the ‘Bulli Bai’ app, an official told the PTI news agency.

The app appeared to be a clone of Sulli Deals, which sparked a brawl last year by offering users a “Sulli” – a derogatory term used by right-wing social media trolls for Muslim women – and calling them “the offer of the day”.

Although there were no real sales involved, the purpose of the app was to demean, humiliate and harass, some of its goals said.

“The ‘Bulli Bai’ app works in the same way as ‘Sulli Deals’ did. When you open it, you randomly find the face of a Muslim woman who appears as Bulli Bai,” said one social media user.

Muslim women with a strong presence on Twitter have been highlighted and their photos were again listed on the platform.

The abuse provoked strong condemnation on Twitter.

The app appeared to have been removed after being released on the Microsoft-owned software-sharing platform GitHub, which allows anyone to upload an app under development.

By removing the Sulli Bai app after complaints last time, GitHub had said, “We suspended user accounts after investigating reports of such activity, all of which violate our policies.”

According to PTI, two First Information Reports or FIRs were filed by Delhi and Uttar Pradesh Police in the ‘Sulli Deals’ controversy last year after images of Muslim women were misused but no significant action was taken against those responsible.

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