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Wrestling

Police records statement of WFI chief, wrestlers turn to crowdfunding

Delhi Police has recorded the statement of the WFI Chief while the wrestlers have turned to crowdfunding to continue their protest.

Police records statement of WFI chief, wrestlers turn to crowdfunding
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Wrestlers observe Black Day at Jantar Mantar (Bajrang Punia/Twitter)

By

Pritish Raj

Updated: 12 May 2023 12:03 PM GMT

Jantar Mantar, New Delhi: Delhi Police confirmed on Friday that it has recorded the statement of WFI Chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh in the sexual harassment charges leveled by wrestlers.

"On the complaint of the wrestlers, the statement of WFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh was recorded and some documents were demanded. Brij Bhushan denied the allegations leveled against him. SIT has been formed with 10 police personnel including four women police officers. A team of ten people was formed under the supervision of a woman DCP," Delhi Police said in a statement.

Apart from forming the SIT to investigate the matter, the magistrate court has asked the Police to record the statement of all the victims before the court.

The matter has been listed on May 27 for further hearing.

Wrestlers turn to crowdfund

With the funds depleting after 20 days of sit-in protests at the Jantar Mantar, the wrestlers have turned to crowdfund to continue their protest against WFI Chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.

Talking to The Bridge on the condition of anonymity, one of the protesting wrestlers said, "We had started the protest with an amount of 24 lakhs but we didn't expect it to go for this long."

"With our funds drying up, we have decided to ask people for help and till now we have collected 6.5 lakhs so far," the wrestler added. The contributions are coming from individuals, organisations, Khaps, and akhadas supporting the cause.

The Bridge has learned that Bajrang, Vinesh, and Sakshee had contributed Rs 3 lakh each out of their pockets to fund the movement when it started and 15 lakhs were added later by supporting coaches, wrestlers, and akhadas.

As per the protesting wrestlers, the majority of money is spent on food and water. With close to 1000 supporters present at the venue daily, the water and home-cooked food take up close to Rs. 1.5 lakh every day.

The wrestlers are cautious about the hygiene of the food as it can be spiked or can cause trouble to their health and that is reason the food for the wrestlers comes from their relatives' houses in Delhi.

The wrestlers hope to continue the protest with the support of Khaps, friends, and other supporters.

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