The ongoing dispute between the Indian Wrestling Association and senior wrestlers witnessed a new rotation on Wednesday, 3 January. Hundreds of young wrestlers started protesting at Jantar Mantar against the Olympic medalists Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia, and Vinesh Phaugat. The protesters claimed that the senior wrestlers destroyed the crucial one year from their careers for their selfish motives.
The junior wrestlers were loaded in buses and reached the national capital. The most surprising part of the protest was that the Delhi Police was unaware of the gathering. Around 300 protesters are from the Arya Samaj Akhara of Chaprauli, Bhagpat, and the rest of the opposers are from Haryana and Delhi.
Sakshi Malik, the senior wrestler, attacked the former chief of the Indian Wrestling Association, Brij Bhushan Singh. She said that Singh was responsible for this dissent. “Although we were aware of Brij Bhushan’s (Sharan Singh) influence, we were unaware of his incredible power. His current propaganda is to target us for taking advantage of the opportunities, that young wrestlers have. Now that I’m retired, though, I want young girls to succeed and realize my dream,” she added.
As we all know, Olympic medalists Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia, and Vinesh Fogat have been protesting against the wrestling association president for the last year. In this protest, on one side, Sakshi Malik had announced her retirement, while on the other side, Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat had returned their awards.
Following the complaint of senior wrestlers, former Indian Wrestling Association President Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh had to lose his chair. When elections were held after that, the players opposed the new president, Sanjay Singh. Due to this, the sports ministry had dismissed the wrestling association.
However, on Wednesday, January 3, wrestlers are once again protesting at Jantar Mantar. This time the protest is not against the wrestling association or its officials but against Bajrang, Sakshi, and Vinesh Phogat. The protest is organised by the young wrestlers.