Brij Bhushan Singh, the head of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI), has been accused of sexual harassment and intimidation by female wrestlers. In a fresh salvo at players, Singh has stated that he would take his own life if any of the allegations against him are proven true.
Meanwhile, some of India's most notable wrestlers, such as Bajrang Punia, Vinesh Phogat, and Sakshi Malik, are currently holding a sit-in demonstration at Jantar Mantar in Delhi to protest against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.
Will hang myself if single allegation found true: Brij Bhushan Singh
"I will hang myself even if a single allegation against me is proved. The matter is with the Delhi Police, so I won't be able to speak much in detail on the matter. I have been saying this from the first day if these wrestlers have any video, evidence against me. You should ask anyone who is associated with wrestling.. is Brij Bhushan Ravana?", the WFI chief said in a new video.
"Except these wrestlers (who are protesting), ask anyone if I have done anything wrong. I have given 11 years of my life to wrestling, to this country," Singh said.
The case so far
According to the wrestlers, the government has been slow to release the report from the committee established to investigate the allegations against Brij Bhushan Singh. Additionally, the wrestlers participating in the protest are calling for the removal of Singh from his position as head of the WFI.
The wrestlers have also voiced their discontent with the WFI for resuming its operations while the investigation is still ongoing.
The Delhi Police had initially refused to file a First Information Report (FIR) based on the complaint of seven female wrestlers (one of whom is a minor), but after the Supreme Court intervened, they agreed to do so on April 28. The wrestlers regarded this as their "first victory" in their efforts to obtain justice.
Two FIRs were subsequently filed against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh at the Connaught Place Police Station. The first FIR was in relation to the accusations made by the minor victim and was registered under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, along with relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) regarding indecent behavior, among others.
When an urgent plea regarding the matter was presented to the Supreme Court, the court deemed the filing of the FIRs to be the outcome sought by the protesting wrestlers. The court also denied the petitioner's request for a court-monitored investigation.
Bri Bhushan Singh continues to stress his innocence
Brij Bhushan Singh, a member of India's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), has denied all allegations made against him and stated that he is innocent. He has expressed his willingness to cooperate with any investigation and has stated his trust in the country's judiciary and investigating agencies. Additionally, Singh has accused the protesters of conspiring to defame him.
"You don't get justice from Jantar Mantar. If you want justice, you have to go to the police and the court. They never did that until now. Just kept abusing. We will accept whatever the court decides," he said.
Samyukta Kisan Morcha to hold nation-wide protest
In light of two farmers' organizations declaring their intention to visit the site on Sunday and Monday, security measures have been strengthened at Jantar Mantar and on the outskirts of Delhi.
On Saturday, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha announced that it would stage demonstrations across the country in solidarity with the wrestlers who are protesting against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.
According to officials cited by PTI, the Delhi Police has made extensive preparations to ensure security in the vicinity of Jantar Mantar and the areas bordering the city in anticipation of the upcoming visit.
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