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Wrestler Bajrang Punia To Return His Padma Shri In Protest Over New WFI Chief Sanjay Singh

Indian wrestler Bajrang Punia has announced that he would return his Padma Shri award to Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Indias Bajrang Punia holds the Tri-Colour aloft after winning wrestling gold in CWG 2022.
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A day after Indian wrestler and Olympic medallist Sakshi Malik hanging up her boots in protest over the election of Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh's close aide Sanjay Singh's as the new WFI President, Bajrang Punia has now written a letter to PM Narendra Modi stating that he will be returning his Padma Shri. (More Wrestling News)

He wrote,  "I am returning my Padmashree award to the Prime Minister. This is just my letter to announce that. This is my statement," Bajrang Punia posted his letter on X.

"Dear PM Ji, hope your health is well. You must be busy in many work but I am writing this to draw your attention to the wrestlers of the country. You must be aware that the women wrestlers of the country started a protest in January this year against Brish Bhushan Singh accusing him of sexual harassment. I too joined their protest. The protest stopped after the government promised strong action," Punia wrote.

"But there was no FIR against Brij Bhushan even after three months. We again took to the streets in April so that the police at least file an FIR against him. There were 19 complainants in January but the number came down to 7 by April. This means Brij Bhushan exerted his influence on 12 women wrestlers," Bajrang Punia wrote.

On Thursday, Sanjay Singh was selected as the new WFI president, who is also a Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh loyalist.

Post the results, Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat addressed the media wherein Sakshi announced her retirement as a mark of protest. "We fought from our heart but if a man like Brij Bhushan, his business partner and a close aide is elected as the president of WFI, I give up wrestling. From today onwards you will not see me on the mat," Sakshi said as she kept her boot with tears in her eyes.

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