Wrestlers vs WFI: Olympian Bajrang Punia reacts to PT Usha's remark about grapplers tarnishing India's image

Wrestlers vs WFI: Olympian Bajrang Punia reacts to PT Usha's remark about grapplers tarnishing India's image

The ace sprinter expressed her disapproval of the wrestlers' decision to stage a public protest in Delhi before the committee investigating their allegations released its report.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Friday, April 28, 2023, 11:36 AM IST
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Olympian wrestler Bajrang Punia reacted to the remark given by PT Usha on the ongoing wrestlers' protest. Citing the time when Usha's academy was being demolished and she raised her concerns on social media platforms, the grappler questioned PT Usha whether that wasn't about tarnishing nation's image.

"PT Usha has been our icon. We felt hurt by what she said. I want to ask her - when her academy was being demolished and she had raised her concerns on social media, then was that not tarnishing India's image?," said Bajrang Punia.

PT Usha criticizes wrestlers' public protest

The ongoing public protest by wrestlers alleging sexual harassment by Wrestling Federation India boss Brijbhushan Sharan Singh has been strongly criticized by PT Usha, the chief of Indian Olympic Association.

The ace sprinter expressed her disapproval of the wrestlers' decision to stage a public protest in Delhi before the committee investigating their allegations released its report.

Usha said the protest "amounts to indiscipline" and "is tarnishing the image of India." However, Rio Games bronze medalist Sakshi Malik strongly disagreed with Usha's comments, stating that she isn't listening to other women athletes and that the wrestlers are sitting peacefully.

Investigation into allegations

Anurag Thakur, the Sports Minister, established a six-member committee to investigate the allegations against the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) and its chief, Brijbhushan Sharan Singh. The committee was instructed to present its findings to the Youth Affairs and Sports Ministry, which it did on April 5th.

However, despite receiving the report, the ministry has not released its conclusions to the public. Singh, who is also a BJP MP, has denied any wrongdoing and stated his intention to vigorously defend himself against the accusations.

Modi government supports players

Speaking to reporters, Anurag Thakur stated that the Narendra Modi government has done excellent work for sportspersons in the country, spending a lot to help them. Some 3,000 players receive ₹ 5 lakh for their boarding, lodging, and training, as well as ₹ 1.20 lakh for personal expenses.

Thakur mentioned that he heard the wrestlers' grievances for 12 hours, made a committee, and did a press conference late at night. The Narendra Modi government is clear about standing with the players and helping them, and the priorities are the sports and the players.

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