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He told CNN Business that the site posted photos of 100 Muslim women, and that he had taken screenshots of all of them before they were deleted.
The page has since been removed, and there’s no indication that it had any practical use beyond using a fake auction to harass and troll Muslim women.
“GitHub has longstanding policies against content and conduct involving harassment, discrimination, and inciting violence,” a spokesperson said. “We suspended a user account following the investigation of reports of such activity, all of which violate our policies.”
The page caused outrage on Twitter over the weekend. Politicians from opposition parties urged the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to take action against the online harassment and targeting of Muslim women.
“To ‘sell’ someone online is a cybercrime and I call on the police to take immediate action,” tweeted Congress leader Shashi Tharoor. “The perpetrators deserve exemplary & condign punishment.”
At that time, Muslim women told CNN that the online abuse they are facing is indicative of the mood toward Muslims in India since Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu-nationalist BJP came to power in 2014.
In recent years, reports of anti-Muslim hate crimes have increased, and several BJP-ruled states have passed legislation that critics say has contributed to a rise in religious polarization.
This weekend, a Twitter user Hiba Bég said that her pictures were used in both instances. “I have censored myself, I hardly speak here anymore, but still, I am being sold online, I’m being made ‘deals’ out of,” she tweeted. “How many online deals will it take for us to see action?”
— Esha Mitra, Rhea Mogul and Swati Gupta contributed to this report.
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