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Wrestlers' Protest: Delhi Police denies 'violence by drunk cops' charge
Wrestlers' Protest
Image Credit: Video grab

Wrestlers' Protest: Delhi Police denies 'violence by drunk cops' charge

| @indiablooms | 04 May 2023, 04:16 pm

New Delhi: Delhi Police has responded to the protesting wrestlers’ allegations that they were manhandled by drunk cops late Wednesday night when they wanted to bring in some folding beds at Jantar Mantar where they are sitting on a dharna, media reports said.

The police said that last night Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Somnath Bharti reached the protest site with folding beds without seeking their permission. As a result, police had to intervene and a minor scuffle ensued, reports said.

According to them, no force was used against the protesters and five police personnel sustained injuries in the altercation. The AAP leader and two others were detained, police said.

Contrary to this, the wrestlers have alleged that several wrestlers were hit on the head with two sustaining injuries and one of them fell unconscious, said reports.

"A drunk policeman, Dharemendra, abused Vinesh Phogat and got involved in a scuffle with us," former wrestler Rajveer was quoted as saying by NDTV.

Geeta Phogat, who is an Olympic athlete and has won a gold medal in the Commonwealth Games, stated that her brother Dushyant Phogat suffered a serious head injury that caused his skull to fracture, said reports.

The Delhi Police have denied claims that some of their officers were under the influence of alcohol during an altercation with protesters.

Asian and Commonwealth Games gold medallist Vinesh Phogat broke down and stated that she and her fellow athletes were not criminals and should not be treated as such. "If you want to kill us, then kill us," she said.

Meanwhile, Bajrang Punia, who won a bronze medal at the Olympics, spoke to NDTV and requested that the government take back all the medals he had won. “I request the government that it take back all the medals I have won."

In the aftermath of the clash, a large contingent of police has been deployed to the protest site, and the area has been cordoned off with barricades, preventing media personnel from accessing the location where the wrestlers are protesting.

Congress leader Deepender Singh Hooda said he was detained by Delhi Police and taken to Vasant Vihar police station when he reached the protest site on Wednesday night.

India's leading wrestlers have launched a protest against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, the Chief of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) and a Member of Parliament from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), over allegations of sexual harassment. However, Singh has denied all accusations.

The wrestlers are demanding an impartial investigation into the allegations and have called for Singh's removal from his position as the WFI chief.

Meanwhile, Supreme Court on Thursday closed proceedings on the petition filed by three women wrestlers on sexual harassment against Singh. The court noted that FIRs have been registered and seven of the complainants have been provided adequate security.

The apex court directed the wrestlers to approach the judicial magistrate court or high court.

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