BJP MP Pritam Munde from Maharashtra has come out in support of the protesting women wrestlers, saying that their complaints “should be immediately considered”.
Pritam is the first BJP MP from the state to extend support to the protesting wrestlers, who have been demanding the arrest of Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, also a BJP MP, alleging sexual harassment.
"I, not as a member of Parliament, but as a woman say that if such a complaint comes from any woman, then its cognisance should be taken. It should be verified." After verification, authorities should decide whether it is proper or improper, she said.
"If cognisance is not taken, then it is not welcomed in democracy," the Lok Sabha member from Beed said. "The cognisance of this case is now being taken at an international level. Now if I demand an inquiry committee, it will be a publicity stunt. I expect that action will be taken in this case," Munde said.
“Whenever a woman makes a complaint as serious as this, it should be taken into consideration. The authorities should investigate the matter. I agree that any action should only be taken after investigation but what is important is you cannot overlook the complaints. If some women wrestlers are raising a serious issue, it should be immediately considered,” Pritam said in Beed, her constituency, on Wednesday.
BJP MP Brijendra Singh from Haryana called the protest 'absolutely heartbreaking' as the wrestlers went to immerse their medals in Haridwar's Ganga on Tuesday and were stopped by farmers' union leader Naresh Tikait.
"I feel the pain and helplessness of our wrestlers forcing them to the brink of throwing away their lifetime of hardwork- the medals from Olympics, CWGs, Asian Games in the holy Ganga. Absolutely heartbreaking," Brijendra Singh tweeted.
I feel the pain and helplessness of our wrestlers forcing them to the brink of throwing away their lifetime of hardwork- the medals from Olympics, CWGs, Asian Games in the holy Ganga.— Brijendra Singh (@BrijendraSpeaks) May 30, 2023
Various political parties have stepped up attack on the government over the issue.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday joined a protest in Kolkata against the alleged manhandling of wrestlers at New Delhi's Jantar Mantar on Sunday.
The Congress too lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, asking why he did not appeal to the protesting wrestlers to not throw their medals in the Ganga.
(With inputs from PTI)