New Delhi: Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh on Wednesday denied the allegations of sexual exploitation leveled against him by senior wrestlers, reported news agency ANI. “There has been no incident of sexual harassment. If such a thing has happened, then I will hang myself,” he said. 

“I want to ask Vinesh Phogat, why did she wear a costume with a company’s logo on it in the Olympics? After she lost the match, I only encouraged & motivated her,” he added.

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WFI President also said Wrestlers who are sitting in protest have not contested any national tournament after the Olympics.

Vinesh Phogat on Wednesday alleged that Brij Bhushan Sharma had sexually harassed her. 

“Women wrestlers have been sexually harassed at national camps by coaches and also the WFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Sharma,” Vinesh Phogat was quoted as saying by the Indian Express.

“Some of the coaches appointed at national camps have been sexually harassing women Wrestlers for years. The WFI president is also involved in sexual harassment. Many young women wrestlers have complained and cried about being sexually harassed at national camps,” she added.

“We will present all evidence when the high court will direct us. We are also ready to submit all evidence to the PM,” she added.

Meanwhile, star wrestler Sakshee Malikkh also appealed to remove complete federation.

“Whole federation should be removed so that the future of new wrestlers is safe. A new federation should come into existence. Dirt has spread from the lower level. We’ll speak to PM & HM & reveal details. Investigation must be done on some matters,” she said.

Wrestlers Stage Protest Against WFI President

The nation’s top wrestlers, including Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist Bajrang Punia and world championship medalist Vinesh Phogat, staged a protest against the “dictatorship” of the national federation President on Wednesday.

Although the wrestlers did not specify the specifics of their complaints or demands, it was evident that they are dissatisfied with the manner in which Singh, who is also a Kaiserganj-based BJP MP, runs the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).

There are 30 wrestlers gathered at Jantar Mantar, including Bajrang, Vinesh, Rio Olympics medalist Sakshi Malik, world championship medalist Sarita Mor, Sangeeta Phogat, Satyawart Malik, Jitender Kinha, and CWG medalist Sumit Malik.

“Our fight is not against the government or Sports Authority of India (SAI). This is against WFI. We will share details later in the day. ‘Yeh ab aar paar ki ladai hai’ (It’s a fight to the finish),” Bajrang Punia told PTI.

The protest has also been joined by Bajrang’s support staff, including his physiotherapist Anand Dubey and coach Sujeet Mann.

Another wrestler stated, “The dictatorship will not be tolerated.”

Since 2011, Singh has been in charge. In February 2019, he won the presidency of WFI for the third time in a row.

“The players make every effort to win medals for the country but the federation has not done anything except downgrading us. Arbitrary rules are being framed to torture the athletes,” tweeted Sakshi.

Along the same lines, wrestlers Anshu Malik, Sangeeta Phogat, and others tweeted using the hashtag “BoycottWFIPresident” and tagging the PMO, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and Home Minister Amit Shah. 

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