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Wrestlers yet to meet after release from police detention, will plan next move

After being released from police detention, the protesting wrestlers are yet to meet and plan their next move.

Wrestlers yet to meet after release from police detention, will plan next move

Sangeeta Phogat and Vinesh Phogat are on the ground after being detained by police. (Credits: Arun Thakur/AFP)



Updated: 29 May 2023 3:32 PM GMT

Released late last night from police detention, the wrestlers are still contemplating their next move even as they continued to get support from the sporting fraternity after police action against top grapplers was unequivocally condemned by political and sports personalities.

Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia, Sangeeta Phogat, Sakshi Malik, and several others were detained by Delhi police on Sunday when they attempted to move towards the new Parliament building for women's 'Mahapanchayat'.

Disturbing videos of police action against elite wrestlers emerged from Jantar Mantar, which will now remain out of bounds for them. The wrestlers are demanding the arrest of WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.

"We will let you know soon what our next move will be. We are still gathering ourselves. I was released at 11 pm and Bajrang was released around midnight. We are yet to meet at a commonplace. We will soon discuss it," said one of the protesting wrestlers.

The police, which has filed FIRs against the trio of Bajrang, Vinesh, Sakshi, and several others for violation of law and order, have made it clear that they will not allow the wrestlers to return to Jantar Mantar.

Meanwhile, India's first individual Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra denounced the police action against the top wrestlers, saying the treatment meted out to grapplers left him "sleepless" and was "haunted" by the horrifying images.

Unprecedented scenes of police dragging Olympic and world championships medal-winning players, including Sakshi, Vinesh, Punia, and Sangeeta Phogat, were witnessed when the wrestlers and their supporters breached the security cordon ahead of their march towards the new Parliament building.

"Last night was sleepless, haunted by the horrifying images of my fellow Indian wrestlers protesting," tweeted Bindra, even as India's most successful footballer Sunil Chhetri and former India all-rounder too criticized the action against the wrestlers.

"It's high time we establish independent safeguarding measures across sporting organizations. We must ensure that if such situations arise, they are dealt with utmost sensitivity and respect. Every athlete deserves a safe and empowering environment," added Bindra, the 2008 Beijing Olympics gold medallist in air rifle.

India football captain Sunil Chhetri, tweeted, "Why does it have to come down to our wrestlers being dragged around without any consideration? This isn't the way to treat anyone. I hope this whole situation is assessed the way it should be."

Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan said a solution to the issue should be found immediately.

"I'm so sad to see the visuals of our Athletes…. Please solve this ASAP," Pathan tweeted.

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