Neeraj Chopra, Kapil Dev demand ‘justice’ for protesting Indian wrestlers

Last week, including India’s top wrestlers Bajrang PuniaVinesh Phogat and Sakshi Malik have resumed their agitation against wrestling federation chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, three months after ending their strike following the formation of an inspection committee to investigate allegations of sexual harassment against Singh. Protesting wrestlers returned to Jantar Mantar on Sunday and sought time from PM Narendra Modi, who is also a BJP MP, to discuss the serious allegations against the WFI chief.

Neeraj Chopra; Indian wrestlers during the protest; Kapil Dev (File/PTI)

As wrestlers demand action against Singh, India’s only Olympic track and field gold medalist Neeraj Chopra came in his support. Taking to his official Twitter account, Chopra said he was “pained” to see his fellow athletes taking to the streets to demand “justice” and urged swift action.

“It pains me to see our athletes on the streets demanding justice. He has worked hard to represent our great nation and make us proud. As a nation, we are responsible for protecting the integrity and dignity of each individual, athlete or not,” Chopra wrote.

“What is happening should never have happened. This is a sensitive issue and should be dealt with in a fair and transparent manner. The concerned authorities should take prompt action to ensure justice.

India’s World Cup-winning former captain Kapil Dev also posted a story on his official Instagram profile to share his support for the wrestlers. He wrote, “Will he ever get justice?” Posting a picture of a press conference featuring Bajrang and Vinesh among others.

Kapil Dev’s Instagram Story (Instagram)

Earlier, fellow wrestler Ravi Dahiya also took to his Twitter account to stand by his teammates. Ravi wrote, “A soldier and a sportsman is the pride of every country and it is the duty of the country to respect them.”

The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) is yet to complete its probe into the allegations against the WFI chief, while the findings of a government-constituted inspection panel are yet to be made public.

Frustrated with the three-month long wait, the wrestlers returned to Jantar Mantar to resume their agitation on 23 April and also moved the Supreme Court demanding the arrest of the WFI chief.

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