The best wrestlers in the nation have been protesting, according to Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, for the last four months, putting an end to all sport-related activities.
The WFI chairman went on to say that although he is willing to be “hanged,” wrestling events like national championships and camps shouldn't halt since it would be bad for cadet and junior wrestlers.
“In the last four months, there has been no wrestling action at all. I say hang me, but keep wrestling going; don't mess with the next generation of kids. Whoever organizes the cadet nationals is free to do so—whether it's Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, or Tripura—but don't halt the (wrestling) activities, said Brij Bhushan in a media interview.
The nation's capital's Jantar Mantar is the scene of a protest by prominent Indian wrestlers, including Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik, and Vinesh Phogat, who are calling for Brij Bhushan to be punished for allegedly harassing female wrestlers.
Additionally, two FIRs have been registered against the BJP MP, the first of which relates to allegations made by a minor and was done so in accordance with the Indian Penal Code's relevant sections on outraging modesty as well as the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO).
For conducting thorough investigations into the allegations made by adult complainants under pertinent IPC provisions relating to outraging of modesty, a second FIR has been filed.
The planned WFI elections on May 7 have been postponed by the sports ministry, who has also requested that the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) create an ad hoc committee to oversee the sports organization and hold the elections within 45 days of its formation.
In order to manage the activities of the WFI until a new board is chosen, the IOA established a three-member ad hoc panel, consisting of former shooter Suma Shirur, Bhupendra Singh Bajwa, and a yet-to-be-named retired high court judge.
The protesting wrestlers, the IOA, or the government, according to Brij Bhushan, are all welcome to organize the cadet nationals as long as the competition goes on.
“I request that you organize the cadet nationals, junior nationals, and other competitions, protesting wrestlers, the IOA, and the government. If not, it may be organized by the federation (WFI).
He is now 14 years and 9 months old and will be 15 plus in three months. If he turns 15, a chance to compete (in the nationals) will be lost. They (the IOA, the wrestlers who are protesting, and the government) should take this argument seriously. Hang me, but don't mess with the kids' future; let the nationals take place, and let the camp continue,” he said.
Although Brij Bhushan has stated that he will not run for president, he has suggested that he may look for another position within the federation. With three terms of four years each, he has already held the position of WFI president for 12 years. Under the Sports Code, he is not qualified to reapply for the position.
Navjot Singh Sidhu, a former cricketer for India and political figure, supported the protesting wrestlers in Jantar Mantar on Monday who were calling for Brij Bhushan to be charged with a crime.
Sidhu questioned why Brij Bhushan wasn't being detained despite the fact that a “non-bailable POCSO Act” charge had been filed against him.
MK Stalin, the chief minister of Tamil Nadu, sent Abdullah, a DMK member of the Rajya Sabha, to the protest location to show solidarity for the wrestlers.