10 June, 2023 | Anupam Shrivastav
Bajrang Punia also alleged that police took a female wrestler to Brij Bhushan’s house in a bid to scare them while he was in there.
Olympian Bajrang Punia said that the father of the underage girl who amended her statement in the sexual harassment lawsuit against WFI chairman Birj Bhushan Singh stated he was “under a lot of pressure” and that the entire family was “in depression.”
Bajrang Punia, an important figure in the wrestlers’ protest against the WFI president, stated “if a person is under pressure, he can be made to say things”. Bajrang Punia said that if the chargesheet in the case is not issued by June 15, as the government has promised, the wrestlers would launch a larger protest.
Punia stated that he will not comment on the youngster amending her statement in front of the magistrate or on her father’s statements.
“The minor wrestler’s father has said that he was under a lot of pressure from all sides, that his family is under pressure. media didn’t show this part.. it only showed that the statement has been withdrawn but not the reason why it was done. If people like Brij Bhushan will roam outside, it will definitely do (exert pressure)….Her (minor) father has said that he is under pressure and that the entire family is in depression. He said if something happens to him, who will bring back the father (of the girl)? People can be made to say anything under pressure,” Bajrang Punia said.
He stated that whether the girl is a juvenile or not, only her family may provide information, but regardless of it, “if something wrong has happened with her, that’s bad”.
“Only her family members can only provide the exact details if the girl is a minor or not. The sad part is that fake news is being circulated that wrestlers are compromising with ministers…We have met Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur. The government assured the wrestlers that our demands will be heard. If necessary, we will protest after 15th June and none of the wrestlers will resume their government duties after we start our protest. If we do not resume our protest, all the wrestlers will get back to their government jobs,” Bajrang Punia added.
Police took a female wrestler to Brij Bhushan’s home, trying to scare the girls: Bajrang Punia
He said that as part of its inquiry, the police took a female wrestler to Brij Bhushan’s home. “It seems as if the police are trying to scare the girls. They took the woman wrestler to Brij Bhushan’s house for investigation. When the wrestler asked, the police said that there is no one inside. Later, we got to know that Brij Bhushan was in his house only. It should not have been done. It is a matter for concern for us as well,” Bajrang Punia told.
The female wrestler was sent to the Wrestling Federation of India office, according to Delhi Police on Friday. The minor wrestler’s father informed a media outlet that he “corrected” a statement he made with regard to the case against Brij Bhushan Singh and that he filed a false complaint against him “out of anger.”
He added the wrestlers contacted the Panchayat in Sonipat on Saturday, and they notified Khap members about our meeting with the Ministers. “If our demands are not fulfilled, we will resume our protest after 15th June…The government has assured us that the chargesheet will be filed before 15th June and that Brij Bhushan and his associates will not become a member of WFI,” Bajrang Punia told.
Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur stated on Thursday that negotiations with protesting wrestlers were good and that decisions on numerous requests had been made. He stated that not only were their requests discussed, but choices were also made.
“It was a very positive discussion with the agitating wrestlers. All the issues that came from their side were discussed seriously. We have said that the chargesheet will be filed by June 15 and the Wrestling Federation of India’s elections will be held by June 30. For the players, the Internal Complaint Committee will be formed and a woman player or an official will be made its chairperson,” Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur told during the sidelines of an event.
Wrestlers have also offered the names of two coaches for the Indian Olympic Association’s (IOA) ad hoc committee, according to him. “They will be made its members,” Thakur said.
Thakur stated that the wrestlers informed him that they would inform their followers about the negotiations. “We also want the players to return to the mat soon and participate in competitions ahead,” he said.
The wrestlers met with Anurag Thakur on Wednesday after the government made a new offer for discussions. Following the filing of an FIR, Delhi Police has begun an investigation into sexual harassment charges levelled against BJP MP Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.