My heart goes out to those affected: Abhinav Bindra on Wrestlers' protest

"As athletes, we train hard every day to represent our country on the international stage. It is deeply concerning to see our athletes finding it necessary to protest on the streets," he said

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Olympic medallist Abhinav Bindra

Olympic medallist Abhinav Bindra

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India's first individual Olympic gold medal-winning shooter and member of the Olympics Athletes Commission, Abhinav Bindra has expressed support for Indian wrestlers who are protesting at Jantar Mantar in the national capital against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh over allegations of sexual harassment.

Ace Indian grapplers such as Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia, and many other wrestlers are involved in the protest against the WFI chief.

Abhinav Bindra supported the wrestlers in their protest with a poignant tweet on Wednesday.


"As athletes, we train hard every day to represent our country on the international stage. It is deeply concerning to see our athletes finding it necessary to protest on the streets regarding the allegations of harassment in the Indian wrestling administration," Bindra tweeted.

"My heart goes out to all those who have been affected. We must ensure that this issue is handled properly, with the athletes' concerns heard and addressed fairly and independently. This incident highlights the crucial need for a proper safeguarding mechanism that can prevent harassment and ensure justice for those affected. We must work towards creating a safe and secure environment for all athletes to thrive in," he added.

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Over the previous four days, the wrestlers have slept and trained at the protest location.

On Wednesday, grapplers held a candle march at Jantar Mantar in the national capital as they continue their protest against the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) and its president Brijbhushan Sharan Singh. Vinesh Phoghat, Bajrang Punia and Sakshi Malik were present in the candle march.

While talking to the media, Sakshi Malik said, "We urge PM Modi to listen to our Mann Ki Baat. Even Smriti Irani ji is not listening to us. We are trying to show them the light through this candle march," said Sakshee to the media.

The wrestler said that no FIR had been filed after the wrestlers registered a complaint against the WFI and its chief on Friday.

"We trust Supreme Court that it will give us justice," said Sakshi Malik.

Delhi Police on Wednesday submitted before the Supreme Court that a preliminary inquiry would be needed before lodging an FIR against WFI president Brij Bhushan Singh over allegations of sexual harassment. Delhi Police apprised the court that the police felt that there were some issues that needed preliminary inquiry. However, Delhi Police clarified that it has no hesitation to lodge FIR immediately if the court orders.

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud said that the matter is scheduled to be heard on Friday and the bench will look at the entire material. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court issued notice to Delhi Police on the wrestler's plea seeking an urgent hearing on a petition seeking registration of FIR against WFI president Brij Bhushan.

The court noted that there are serious allegations in the petition by wrestlers who have represented India.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Apr 27 2023 | 10:33 AM IST

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