Amidst the ongoing protest by wrestlers and their supports, a Khap Mahapanchayat held in Muzaffarnagar on Thursday decided that a delegation would meet President Droupadi Murmu to seek justice for wrestlers demanding action against BJP MP and outgoing WFI chief Brij Bhushan Saran Singh accused of sexually abusing female grapplers, farmer leader Rakesh Tikiat said.
The mahapanchayat was called by Bhartiya Kisan Union leader Naresh Tikait on Wednesday, a day after he and other farmer leaders managed to dissuade some of India's top wrestlers from throwing their medals in the Ganga river to protest alleged police inaction against the outgoing Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief.
VIDEO | “This meeting (mahapanchayat) was called for discussion, and the decision will be announced tomorrow in Kurukshetra,” says farmer leader Naresh Tikait on future course of action in the wrestlers' protest. pic.twitter.com/wI4gKvwcP4— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) June 1, 2023
Machapanchayat on Friday
Naresh Tikait is the head of the Balyan Khap. The mahapanchayat was attended by khap leaders from Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Delhi. At the mahapanchayat, Rakesh Tikiat said the khaps will hold another meeting in Kurukshetra on Friday where more decisions will be taken. "Representatives of the khaps will meet the president and the government in support of the wrestlers and the fight will continue till they get justice," he said.
"We will meet the president and the government and if they do not take any decision (on Brij Bhusan Saran Singh), we will take the next step," Rakesh Tikait said without elaborating further. He, however, did not mention when they would meet the president.
Asked to comment on the outgoing WFI chief making statements in the media, Tikait said, "The person who has cases registered against him under the Protection Of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act has been given the liberty to talk while the government is not saying anything."
Brij Bhushan said the women wrestlers are changing their demands since they started their protest against him, asserting that the charges are already being probed by the Delhi Police. "Police is probing the matter. Let it complete. Whatever comes in it, I will act accordingly," Singh, who is also the BJP MP, said at a press conference.
On Tuesday, Olympic medallists Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia, and Asian Games gold medallist Vinesh Phogat went to Har Ki Pauri in Haridwar along with their supporters to throw their medals in the Ganga. However, they relented after khap and farmer leaders sought five days' time to address their grievances.
The Delhi Police has filed two FIRs against Singh. While the first FIR relates to allegations by a minor wrestler and has been registered under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, the second is related to outraging modesty. Singh, who has repeatedly denied all charges against him, said on Wednesday that he would hang himself if a single allegation is proved against him.
(With inputs from PTI)