Disha Ravi

A young climate change activist running the Fridays For Future initiative in India was arrested for allegedly making a ‘toolkit’ to support the Farmer's protest in India in 2021.


Disha Annappa Ravi is a young climate change activist and the founder of Fridays For Future from India. International media coverage followed her detention on February 13, 2021, for allegedly using an online toolkit related to Greta Thunberg and the 2020-2021 Indian farmer protests.

Life and Activism

Disha Ravi graduated from Mount Carmel College, Bangalore. She worked as a culinary experience manager at a vegan food company before her arrest. In an interview  Ravi said that her awareness of the environment and farmers came early in her life through the discussions in her family about the depletion of groundwater in places in south Karnataka.

She is a member of the FFF movement, a  MAPA wing, which stands for “Most Affected People and Areas,” of the Global South bearing the brunt of pollution and climate change.

Disha mentioned in an interview with Auto Report Africa that she was inspired to get involved in climate activism after seeing her farming grandparents struggle.

Circumstances of Arrest

Disha was picked up on February 13, 2021, by a team of the Delhi Police to be questioned from her residence in Soladevanahalli, Bengaluru, for allegedly circulating a social media toolkit relating to the 2020–2021 Indian farmers’ protests. She was taken to Delhi, where she was subsequently arrested that night.

She was placed in police custody for 5 days. The arrest was reportedly based on an FIR filed by the Delhi Police’s cybercrime squad, which was registered against the designers of the “toolkit” on the 4th of February. The toolkit, according to the authorities, contained connections to pro-Khalistani websites. The government tried to paint the farmers who were protesting, many of whom were Sikhs, as being driven by religious nationalism.

The arrest was covered in the international media and her arrest was condemned in India and abroad.

Charges and Allegations

The police filed a case of sedition and criminal conspiracy against Disha and said that her arrest was related to an investigation into farmers storming the historic Red Fort on January 26, 2021.

According to the Delhi police, the main aim of the ‘toolkit’ was to create misinformation and disaffection against the lawfully enacted government. The police claimed that Disha shared the document with Thunberg, who then tweeted it.

The police treated the toolkit as proof of a coordinated international conspiracy “to wage economic, social, cultural, and regional war against India,” and allegedly accused Disha Ravi of being an “editor” and “key conspirator” in its creation.

Current status

The public prosecutor on February 14, 2021, alleged that Disha Ravi was a part of a bigger conspiracy involving Khalistani separatists.  Disha stated that she supported farmers since they are the future and we all need to eat. She also denied knowing the organisation and being a part of any scheme.

Judge Rana stated that he did not find any practical basis for keeping a 22-year-old in detention considering the sparse and hazy evidence on record.

The judge in the order wrote that the citizens are conscious guardians of the government in any democratic Nation. They can not be imprisoned only because they want to oppose the state policies.

Last Update

A Delhi court granted bail to Disha Ravi on 23 February 2021.

Disha Ravi discussed her encounter with unwarranted resistance from officials in an interview with Atmos. earth. She described how the process of getting her passport ultimately took nearly three months when it should have only taken 10 days.

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