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  5. Protesting wrestlers write to IOA President PT Usha, demand resignation of WFI President

Protesting wrestlers write to IOA President PT Usha, demand resignation of WFI President

Wrestlers Protest | India's tip wrestlers are protesting at Delhi's Jantar Mantar since Wednesday against the Wrestling Federation of India President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.

Written By: Varun Malik New Delhi Updated on: January 20, 2023 15:55 IST
Wrestlers write letter to PT Usha
Image Source : TWITTER, PTI Wrestlers write letter to PT Usha

Wrestlers Protest | In a major update on the ongoing wrestlers' protest at Delhi's Jantar Mantar, the Indian wrestlers have written a letter to the Indian Olympic Association President PT Usha. The letter, which is signed by the likes of Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia, Ravi Dahiya and Deepak Punia, accuses the Wrestling Federation of India President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh to have sexually harassed several young wrestlers. The letter also lists four demands.

In the demands, the letter states, "We request the IOA to immediately appoint a committee to enquire into the complaints of sexual harassment, resignation of the WFI President, dissolution of the WFI, and a new committee should be formed to run the affairs of the WFI in consultation with the wrestlers." 

The letter also mentions that wrestler Vinesh Phogat was mentally harassed and tortured by the WFI president after she missed bagging a medal at the Tokyo Olympics, and she almost contemplated suicide. The wrestlers mention that "there has been financial misappropriation on the part of WFI." They also state that coaches and sports science staff in the national camp are "absolutely incompetent and not on merit." Notably, the letter states that there has been no political party or industrialist involvement in the protest. The wrestlers say that they will not budge until the WFI President is sacked. 

DCW chief Maliwal targets Ministry

The DCW chief Swati Maliwal has asked why the WFI President's resignation has not been sought. In a tweet, Maliwal wrote, "It has been 72 hours since the protest was launched by the Indian wrestlers. Why has the WFI president's resignation not been sought? Why is an FIR not being registered in connection with the sexual harassment allegations? Why is the sports minister not making efforts to end the protest? Till when will the pride of the country sit on the street like this?"

Earlier the IOA President PT Usha had stated that the athletes should come forward to voice their concerns. "As IOA President, I've been discussing the current matter of wrestlers with the members and for all of us, the welfare and well-being of the athletes is the top most priority of IOA. We request athletes to come forward and voice their concerns with us," Usha wrote on Thursday. She added, "We will ensure a complete investigation to ensure justice. We also have decided to form a special committee to deal with such situations that may arise in the future, for swifter action."


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