Even after the committee formed by wrestling wrestler Vinesh Phogat to investigate the allegations of sexual exploitation on the President of Wrestling Federation of India, the matter does not seem to calm down. Wrestlers are not satisfied with the oversight committee.
New Delhi: The ongoing tussle between the wrestlers and the Wrestling Federation of India has led to a rift among the officials of the governing body of the sport. Sources said that informal meetings are underway to plan the future if WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh is sidelined. The matter comes a day after Sports Minister Anurag Thakur announced an Oversight Committee to handle the day-to-day functioning of the WFI and investigate the serious allegations leveled by the wrestlers.
Sources said – the members of the federation are meeting informally. Some people are not in favor of the continuation of Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh as the allegations are really serious and it has affected the image of the federation globally. However, everything depends on the outcome of the reports submitted by the committees. Wrestlers protested at Jantar Mantar accusing WFI President Brij Bhushan of sexual harassment of women wrestlers, embezzlement of sponsorship funds and mismanagement of athletes.
On Tuesday, Olympic medalist wrestlers Bajrang Punia and Sakshi Malik expressed disappointment that the wrestlers were not consulted by the government before constituting the monitoring committee. The Tokyo Olympics bronze medalist said on Twitter, ‘We were assured that we would be consulted before the monitoring committee was formed. It is very sad that we were not even consulted before forming this committee.
On Monday, the Union Sports and Youth Affairs Minister announced the formation of a five-member inspection committee headed by MC Mary Kom comprising Olympic medalist Yogeshwar Dutt, former India badminton player Trupti Murgunde, former Director of the Target Olympic Podium Scheme (TOPS) CEO Captain Rajagopalan and Radhika Sriman, former Executive Director (Team), SAI.
Last week, after wrestlers led by Olympians Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik, Vinesh Phogat, Ravi Dahiya and Deepak Punia sat on a dharna at Jantar Mantar, Thakur announced the formation of an oversight committee to look after the day-to-day activities of the WFI. Of. The minister had also informed that Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh has been asked to stop working as WFI president till the completion of the probe by the Oversight Committee.