The Fact News Service
New Delhi, May 4
After a late-night scuffle between wrestlers and the Delhi Police in Jantar Mantar, the wrestlers claimed that they were manhandled and abused by the police personnel at the protest site.
Reacting to this, the Delhi Police on Thursday said that the supporters of wrestlers became aggressive after they were stopped from taking folding beds at the protest site which they were not allowed, leading to the chaos.
“Folding beds were brought to the protest site in Jantar Mantar. Since there was no permission, we didn’t allow it, so some of the supporters of the protesting wrestlers tried to take out the beds from the truck and this led to an altercation,” DCP Pranav Tayal said.
DCP Tayal further said that the wrestlers have been asked to file a complaint and the medical check-up of the policeman would be conducted on whom “drunk” allegations were raised.
“We have told the wrestlers to give complaint on their grievances and will take appropriate action…medical check-up of the Policeman on whom they’ve raised allegations, being conducted…,” the DCP said.
Wrestlers have alleged that drunk Delhi Police personnel manhandled them when they wanted to bring in mattresses to sleep at night after daylong rain.
“We were bringing the beds since we were facing trouble sleeping due to rain. Sakshi is crying. This is the respect they are giving to our daughters, abusing them,” said the Olympic medalist Bajrang Punia to ANI.
The World Championships and Commonwealth Games medalist Vinesh Phogat also accused the policemen of being drunk, pushing, and abusing women protestors.
“He is drunk. He hit someone on his head. He abused me and pushed several women protestors,” claimed Vinesh.
Ace wrestlers Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia, Sakshee Mallikh and other top grapplers were protesting against sexual harassment charges against the WFI chief and they are demanding the arrest of Brij Bhushan.
Deputy Commissioner of Police, Pranav Tayal said that Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Somnath Bharti came to the protest site along with folding beds without permission.
“During the wrestler’s protest at Jantar Mantar, AAP leader Somnath Bharti came to the protest site along with folding beds without permission. When we intervened, the supporters became aggressive and tried to get the beds out of the truck,” he said.
Pranav Tayal said that a minor altercation took place and Somnath Bharti along with 2 others was detained.
Earlier on Wedneday, the Indian Olympic Association president PT Usha arrived at Jantar Mantar where the wrestlers have been staging a protest for the last 11 days demanding that action be taken against the WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who is facing allegations of sexual harassment.
The IOA president arrived at Jantar Mantar earlier today where the wrestlers have been staging a protest for the last 11 days demanding that action be taken against the WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who is facing allegations of sexual harassment.
Previously, Usha had ruffled feathers with her remarks that the wrestlers should have approached the IOA instead of going out in the streets against the WFI and its president, whom the wrestlers accused of sexual harassment and mismanagement of athletes.
“Indian Olympic Association (IOA) is having a committee for sexual harassment, instead of going to the streets they (protesting wrestlers) could have come to us earlier but they did not come to IOA. It is not good for sports not only for wrestlers, they should also have some discipline,” the IOA president had told mediapersons.
Wrestlers had expressed their disappointment at her April 27 remarks.
Three months ago prominent wrestlers came forward to lead a protest against the WFI Chief, the Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports announced the formation of an ‘oversight committee’ to probe allegations levelled against the WFI and its chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh and other coaches.
The committee was tasked with submitting a report on the issue to the ministry. The wrestlers launched a fresh protest in April.
On April 30, Delhi Police registered two FIRs against WFI president Singh over allegations of sexual harassment and exploitation of female wrestlers by him. Top Indian grapplers such as Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia, and many other wrestlers are involved in the protest against the WFI chief. (