21 Jan 2023

WFI Controversy: Wrestlers Protest End After Talks With Anurag Thakur, Charges Against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh To Be Probed

New Delhi: There will be an inquiry into the allegations of sexual harassment against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. Sports Minister Anurag Thakur held a meeting with the wrestlers till late Friday night. 

The aggrieved wrestlers called off their protest late on Friday night after getting assurances from the government that their grievances would be addressed, the first step of which was the stepping aside of under-fire Wrestling Federation of India chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. 

The wrestlers, including Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik and Ravi Dahiya, decided to end their protest after a breakthrough was achieved during a second round of talks with union sports minister Anurag Thakur.

After the meeting which lasted for about 7 hours, the wrestlers have decided to end the dharna. Wrestlers were protesting at Delhi's Jantar Mantar since 18 January.

Oversight Committee To Handle Work Of WFI

Anurag Thakur told that the players have made serious allegations against the wrestling association. An Oversight Committee will be constituted, which will complete the investigation within 4 weeks. Names for the committee will be announced tomorrow.

Till the completion of the investigation, a committee will handle the work of WFI. Till then Brij Bhushan Singh will keep himself away from the work of the Federation and cooperate in the investigation.

IOA also forms a probe panel

Wrestler Bajrang Punia told that the Sports Minister listened to our demands and assured proper investigation. We hope that there will be a fair investigation, so we are withdrawing the protest. 

At the same time, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has also formed a 7-member committee to investigate the allegations against Brij Bhushan. This includes boxer Mary Kom and wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt.

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