10 June, 2023 | Anupam Shrivastav
Wrestler Sakshi Malik warned that she and her fellow wrestlers would not participate in Asian Games unless all the outstanding issues pertaining to WFI case are resolved.
Wrestler and Olympic medalist athlete Sakshi Malik on Saturday warned about her participation in Asian Games only after their “issues get resolved”. Sakshi Malik has been part of the protest against former Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) head Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh over sexual harassment claims. Earlier, there were reports of Sakshi Malik joining her job at the Indian Railway which she categorically rejected.
Sakshi Malik was addressing the Mahapanchayat in Sonipat, Haryana where she said “We will participate in Asian Games only when all these issues will be resolved. You can’t understand what we’re going through mentally each day.”
The Asian Games 2023 will be held in China in September, but the withdrawal of wrestlers from the competition might have a significant impact on India, as Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat won gold at the last Asian Games in 2018.
Olympian Bajrang Punia stated earlier this morning that they will present their negotiations with the administration to the people who support them during the Mahapanchayat. “Whatever talks we had with the government, we will discuss that with the people who are supporting and standing with us…,” wrestler Punia told the media.
Sakshi Malik’s threat after meeting with protesting wrestlers positive: Sports Minister Anurag Thakur
Amid a threat from Sakhi Malik, Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur stated on Thursday that the meetings with the protesting wrestlers were constructive and that decisions on numerous requests had been 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,” Minister told the reporters at an event.
Wrestlers have also offered the names of two coaches for the Indian Olympic Association’s (IOA) ad hoc committee, according to Union Sports Minister. He further said that”They will be made its members.”
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,” Thakur said.
The wrestlers met with Anurag Thakur on Wednesday after the government made a new offer for discussions. Following the filing of the FIR, Delhi Police is undertaking an investigation into the sexual harassment accusations levelled against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, a BJP MP.