Protesting wrestlers hold candlelight march demanding arrest of Brij Bhushan | More sports News

NEW DELHI: Thousands of protesters, led by India’s top female wrestlers, gathered in the capital on Tuesday to demand the resignation and arrest of the president of the wrestling federation. The president, Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, has been accused of sexually harassing young athletes, including a minor.
Carrying the national flag, protesters marched to India Gate near the parliament building, accompanied by a heavy police presence.

The protests have been going on for nearly a month, despite a severe heat wave, and wrestlers have suspended their training schedules. In particular, two Olympic medalists, Bajrang Punished And Sakshi Malikjoined the protests and threatened to return their medals if no action is taken against Singh.
The movement has won support from opposition parties and farmers’ unions, with many people expressing concern over alleged sexual harassment. The majority of Indian wrestlers hail from the northern agricultural states of Haryana and Punjab.
Singh, a 66-year-old lawmaker representing the ruling Bharatiya Janata party, denied the charges, calling the protests politically motivated by the opposition. Congress to party.

Vinesh Phogata renowned wrestler who has won medals in various international competitions, had previously denounced coaches exploiting female wrestlers under the supervision of the Indian Wrestling Federation (WFI) president.
The sexual harassment allegations against Singh are currently being investigated by Indian police, and he has been questioned in connection with the case. THE Supreme Court of India acknowledged the seriousness of the allegations, but ruling party leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, remained silent.

Earlier this year, the sports minister asked Singh to step down and help with the investigation, promising a committee would be formed to investigate the matter and issue a report within four weeks. However, Singh continues to lead the federation and no report has been released since then. In April, female wrestlers resumed their protests, vowing not to end them until Singh was arrested.
The case has once again drawn attention to India’s #MeToo movement, which gained momentum in 2018 when scores of actresses and writers came forward on social media with allegations of harassment and assault. sexual. Ongoing protests underscore the need for justice and accountability in cases of harassment within sports organisations.
(With AP inputs)


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