HomeIndiaFacing Backlash, India’s Sports Ministry Suspends Wrestling Federation

Facing Backlash, India’s Sports Ministry Suspends Wrestling Federation


Facing Backlash, India’s Sports Ministry Suspends Wrestling Federation

Photo: The cause of the pain amongst wrestlers has been Brij Bhushan, accused of sexual harassment.

NEW DELHI (ANI) – In a major decision, coming considering fresh protests by star wrestlers Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia over the election of an aide of deposed WFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh as the new president of the wrestling federation, the Union Sports Ministry on December 24 suspended the sport’s premier governing body in the country along with all its office-bearers.

The decision came close on the heels of the newly elected WFI president Sanjay Singh announcing the hosting of the U-15 and U-20 nationals at Nandini Nagar in the Gond district of Uttar Pradesh by the end of the year.

Earlier, Olympian Sakshi Malik announced her retirement from wrestling at an emotional press briefing, claiming that the Centre went back on its word to not install an aide of Brij Bhushan as an office-bearer of the wrestling federation.

Later, voicing his misgivings over the election of Sanjay Singh as the new WFI chief, fellow Olympian Bajrang Punia returned to his Padma Shri in protest.

The star wrestlers earlier led a protest by wrestlers, who came out against Brij Bhushan, accusing him of sexual harassment.

“This announcement is hasty, without giving sufficient notice to wrestlers who are to take part in the said nationals and without following the provisions of the constitution of WFI,” the Sports Ministry stated.

“The decisions made by the newly elected executive body of the WFI demonstrate a blatant disregard for the established legal and procedural norms, violating both the WFI’s constitutional provisions and the National Sports Development Code.

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