Bulli Bai: India pulls down controversial app that displayed Muslim women for 'auction'

Bulli Bai: India pulls down controversial app that displayed Muslim women for 'auction'

Muslim women 

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Police authorities said they have shut down a contentious app following complaints from two Indian states that it was having photos of over 100 Muslim women for sale.

This is just as they confirmed that developers of the app and Twitter handles that shared the Muslim women images and content.

Popularly known as Bulli Bai, the open source app has also been taken down.

Report said that this was the second attempt in months to harass Muslim women in India by “auctioning” them online.

While there was no actual sale involved, the app created on Microsoft-owned open software development site GitHub – was intended “to degrade and humiliate vocal Muslim women”.

Al Jazeera reports that Quratulain Rehbar, a journalist from Indian-administered Kashmir, woke up on January 1, 2022 to see herself listed for an “online auction”.

Her photograph was sourced without her permission and uploaded on an app for “sale”.

However, she wasn't the only victim listed for cyber harassment .

There were well over 100 photographs of Muslim women, including prominent actress Shabana Azmi, wife of a sitting judge of Delhi High Court, multiple journalists, activists and politicians were displayed on the app for auction as “Bulli Bai” of the day.

Most of the women whose photos were uploaded on the Bulli Bai app had tweeted over the weekend that they felt "traumatised" and "horrified".

"It is indeed disappointing to see the impunity with which such hate-mongers continue to target Muslims women, without fear of any sanction whatsoever," she wrote in her complaint.

A 2018 Amnesty International report on online harassment in India showed that the more vocal a woman was, the more likely she was to be targeted – the scale of this increased for women from religious minorities and disadvantaged castes.

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