Crisis worsens as wrestlers threaten to go to Supreme Court

Crisis worsens as wrestlers threaten to go to Supreme Court

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On Monday, the protesting wrestlers vowed to go before the country's highest court if an FIR was not filed against WFI President Brij Bhushan. They also attempted to rally support throughout the nation by pleading with "khaps," "panchayats," and a number of other groups to support their cause.

The protesting wrestlers stated that they had nothing to do with the elections and would continue to push for a thorough investigation into the claims that Singh sexually harassed female athletes. The wrestlers, led by Olympians Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia, and Sakshi Malik, acknowledged their error in calling off their protest three months earlier and said they had been "manipulated" by some individuals.

"We are not going to listen to anyone now. We will be the face of the protest but we will now be guided by our 'gurujans' (elderly) and 'coach-khalifas' (mentors). It was a mistake to end the protest the last time around. We will not accept any mediator now, we won't let anyone deceive us," said Vinesh.

"All we want is that the police file an FIR and investigate the matter. We are citizens of independent India and there are numerous channels to get justice. Won't we get it (justice) from anywhere?" she questioned. The wrestlers assert that they attempted to file an FIR against the WFI president at the Connaught Place Police Station but were turned away.

While Sakshi said they had been duped, Bajrang added that they wanted 'khaps' and other groups to back their uprising.

The last time, we tried to make the demonstration politically neutral, but this time, we want the farmers' associations, the women's organisations, and the "khaps" to support us. Babita Phogat, a former wrestler who is now a BJP supporter, mediated between the disgruntled wrestlers and the government when the protests by the wrestlers started in January.

Sakshi stated that their legal team was thinking of contacting the supreme court. "We will go to the Supreme Court. If we are wrong in levelling the allegations, then a counter FIR should be filed against us," she said.

(With PTI inputs)

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