1983 World Cup-Winning Heroes Advise Wrestlers Not To Throw Away Medals In Ganga

OB Bureau

New Delhi: Some of India’s leading wrestlers, protesting against national federation chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh’s alleged sexual harassment, went to Haridwar earlier this week to immerse their medals in the Ganga.

However, good sense prevailed, and the likes of Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat were convinced by farmer leaders not to throw away their hard-earned medals. The wrestlers gave the government five days to take action against Brij Bhushan, who is a BJP MP.

On Friday, members of the 1983 World Cup-winning cricket team advised the wrestlers not to take any impulsive decision, while expressing their disapproval at the treatment meted out to them by Delhi Police on May 28.

“We are distressed and disturbed at the unseemly visuals of our champion wrestlers being manhandled. We are also most concerned that they are thinking of dumping their hard-earned medals into river Ganga,” read a statement released by the Kapil Dev-led team which made history 40 years ago.

“Those medals have involved years of effort, sacrifice, determination, and grit and are not only their own but the nation’s pride and joy. We urge them not to take any hasty decision in this matter and also fervently hope that their grievances are heard and resolved quickly. Let the law of the land prevail,” they stated.

Last Sunday, Delhi Police detained the wrestlers for violation of law and order when they were marching towards the new Parliament building for a proposed Mahila Mahapanchayat, though they were not given permission.

Police also cleared the protest site at Jantar Mantar, where they had been on a dharna for over a month, and made it clear the wrestlers won’t be allowed back there.

Police action against the wrestlers, who are demanding the arrest of Brij Bhushan, led to a massive hue and cry from different quarters.

The sport’s global body United World Wrestling (UWW) has expressed disappointment over the lack of results of the investigations against Brij Bhushan, and threatened to suspend the Indian federation if elections are not held within 45 days.

OB Bureau

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