Maharashtra: PhD student arrested for ‘defaming’ CM Eknath Shinde, Devendra Fadnavis

A PhD student was arrested in Ahmednagar Saturday for allegedly posting defamatory remarks against Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, among others.

The accused was brought to Mumbai and a local court sent him in four-day police remand. A few other persons may be involved in the crime, the police said, adding that one more person has been detained in the case.

The arrested accused, Ganesh Narayan Gote, 29, is an MSC graduate and a PhD student from Mahatma Phule Agricultural University, Rahuri in Ahmednagar district.

“This month, the Maharashtra Cyber department received a complaint that a person was using his Twitter account to post obnoxious comments about people holding constitutional positions including the chief minister and the deputy chief minister of Maharashtra… the person was also using his Twitter handle to abuse women and some women journalists,” Superintendent of Maharashtra Cyber Police Sanjay Shintre said.

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Shindre said the accused was using a Wi-Fi connection and VPN (Virtual Private Network) to evade arrest. The accused was also trying to create an impression that he was posting content from Mumbai.

On further technical analysis, the police ascertained the accused was posting tweets from the Mahatma Phule Agricultural University.

A team of Maharashtra Cyber detained two persons at the university Saturday. Two mobile phones and one laptop have been seized and further investigations were on, the police said. They added that the role of the other person was being ascertained.

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“Investigations are also on about the possibility that some of the content posted by the accused might have been created by some others… and for this… the seized gadgets are being put through technical analysis,” said inspector Prashant Chougule.