Renowned wrestling coach Mahavir Phogat threatens to return medals

Several Khaps in Haryana have also come in support of the protesting athletes

Mahavir Phogat Mahavir Phogat

Standing in support of the protesting wrestlers, Dronacharya award-winning coach Mahavir Singh Phogat on Friday threatened to return his medals if justice is not delivered, demanding the arrest of WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.

The wrestlers, including Olympic medallist duo of Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia and World Championship medallist Vinesh Phogat, have been sitting on a protest in the national capital since April 23, demanding the arrest of the Wrestling Federation of India Chief and BJP MP Singh for alleged sexual harassment of seven wrestlers, including a minor.

"I will return my medals if justice is not delivered in the case," Mahavir Phogat said. "The kind of allegations he faces, action should be taken against him and he should be arrested," Mahavir Phogat, who had joined BJP over three years ago, added.

When asked if had talked to the government or raised the matter at the party level, he said, "No there has been no talk so far."

 The protesting wrestlers had also threatened to return their medals and awards, including the Padma Shri, to the government after they were allegedly mistreated by the Delhi Police on Wednesday night.

Meanwhile, several Khaps in Haryana have also come in support of the protesting athletes. On Thursday, many Khaps held protests including in Hisar, Bhiwani, Jind and Rohtak, expressing solidarity with the wrestlers and demanding that they should be given justice.

Notably, Mahavir Phogat is the father of wrestlers Babita and Geeta Phogat, who was detained by the police along with her husband on Thursday when she tried to meet the protesting wrestlers at Jantar Mantar. He is also the uncle of Vinesh, who has been at the forefront of the protest. 


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