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Wrestling

Justice more important than Asian Games: Bajrang Punia on Wrestler's Protest

Bajrang Punia announced that getting justice for the sexual harassment cases against WFI chief is more important than Asian Games.

Bajrang Punia Commonwealth Games 2022
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Bajrang Punia is a Tokyo Olympics bronze medallist. (Photo credit: SAI)

By

Pritish Raj

Published: 30 April 2023 3:18 PM GMT

Jantar Mantar, New Delhi: Olympic bronze medalist Bajrang Punia announced that getting justice is more important than the Asian Games at the moment in a media interaction at the ongoing wrestler's protest here on Sunday.

Talking to the media, Bajrang said," We want to play at the Asian Games but getting justice will be bigger for me than playing at the Asian Games."

Bajrang also accused the media of supporting the WFI Chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh more than the players.

"The media is supporting Brij Bhushan more than the players. You see his criminal records. Does any player, sitting here, or players from other sports, have a criminal record?" Bajrang said.

Echoing the thoughts of Bajrang, Vinesh said much to the amusement of the media present at the site," "I ask how can you give such a criminal a platform? Ask yourself. If you don't do that, half of the problems will be solved. That man is still saying things with a smile on his face."

The Tokyo Games medallist Bajrang also tried to point out that it's more difficult to win an Olympic medal than become a Member of Parliament in this country.

"The players win medals for the country, and he is questioning the medal winners. How many people become MPs in this country, and how many people win Olympic medals? To date, there are hardly 40 Olympic medallists, and thousands have become MPs," Bajrang said.

Brij Bhushan claimed that the wrestlers wanted to take over the WFI and thus the protest was happening and that only one family (Phogats) is behind the protest. Bajrang countered the charge.

"If you have to be in WFI, then you have to be a member of a state association. We don't want control of WFI. His son is the president of the UP Association, and the secretary is his son's brother-in-law. His son-in-law is also a member of the state association. He is accusing us of 'parivaarwaad' while actually, it is happening in his case," said Bajrang.

Accused of sexual harassment of women wrestlers, the WFI chief has vowed to fight against the charges and claimed that the athletes' protest was politically motivated.

The Delhi Police has filed two FIRs, including one under the POCSO act, against the BJP MP, who has completed 12 years as WFI president and is ineligible to become an office bearer again.

The next date of hearing in the case listed by the Supreme Court is Friday, 5th May.

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