Rahul Gandhi Takes Jibe On PM Modi Over Wrestler Vinesh Phogat’s Protest

Earlier, wrestler Vineesh Phogat kept her two awards lying in the middle of New Delhi's Kartavya Path after the Delhi Police stopped her from reaching the PMO.


Congress leader Rahul Gandhi attends election rally in Telangana.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has lambasted Prime Minister Narendra Modi over multiple World Championship medallist wrestler Vinesh Phogat returning her Khel Ratna and Arjuna Award.

In her protest, Phogat kept the two awards lying in the middle of New Delhi's Kartavya Path after the Delhi Police stopped her from reaching the prime minister's office. 

As a mark of protest, Phogat left the awards at the Kartavya Path and the Delhi Police later picked them up.

Earlier, Phogat had decided to return her Khel Ratna and Arjuna Award to the government.

She had said such honours have become meaningless at a time when wrestlers are struggling to get justice. 


Stressing that self-respect comes first for “every daughter of the country” and any medal or honour comes after that, Gandhi indirectly mentioned former Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who had been accused of sexual harassment by three well-known grapplers.

“Today, has the cost of 'political gains' derived from a declared 'strongman' become greater than the tears of these brave daughters? The prime minister is the guardian of the nation, witnessing such insensitivity causes anguish,” Rahul Gandhi said.

Phogat, along with Olympic medallists Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia, had protested against the election of Sanjay Singh, a close aide of Brij Bhushan.


Sakshi had also announced her retirement from wrestling soon after Sanjay Singh's appointment.

However, the sports ministry had later suspended the newly elected committee for not following the provisions of its constitution while making decisions and asked the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) to constitute an ad-hoc panel to manage the affairs of the sports body.

In her letter posted on X, Phogat had said their lives are not like those "fancy government advertisements" that talk about women's empowerment and upliftment.

Acting on the sports ministry directive, the IOA on Wednesday constituted a three-member ad hoc committee to run the day-to-day affairs of the WFI.