The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president, Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, is being protested by top wrestlers at the Jantar Mantar in New Delhi. Ace wrestler Vinesh Phogat of India claims that Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur attempted to suppress the issue by creating an oversight panel rather than taking effective action.
Wrestlers are calling for the arrest of Brij Bhushan, a BJP MP, as part of their second phase of protest.
“We terminated our protest after speaking with Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur, who had been informed of the sexual harassment by all the sportsmen. He attempted to bury the issue there by creating a committee, but nothing was done at the time, according to Vinesh, who spoke to reporters.
The legendary wrestler said that it might be difficult to oppose someone in a position of power who has been abusing it for a very long period.
It is quite challenging to oppose someone who has been abusing their position and authority for such a long time, she remarked.
The Olympian went on to say that the wrestlers had their first formal encounter before beginning their protest at Jantar Mantar. However, nothing was done.
Vinesh said, “Three to four months before we sat at Jantar Mantar, we had seen an official and we had informed him everything about how women athletes are sexually harassed and emotionally tormented when no action is done, then we went on dharna.
Brij Bhushan, in the meanwhile, has resisted leaving the wrestling organization since doing so would imply that he has agreed with the accusations.
“My term is going to come to an end if I leave because that would suggest I've accepted their accusations. Elections won't take place until a new party is established and the government has established an IOA committee under that committee, he previously told the media.
The wrestlers' protest has drawn significant political attention, with a number of opposition politicians expressing support for the competitors and calling for the WFI president's resignation.