Congress slams govt after protesting wrestlers allege manhandling by cops, expresses solidarity with grapplers

10:02 AM May 04, 2023 | PTI |

The Congress on Thursday hit out at Union Minister Amit Shah and the Delhi Police under him over a scuffle between police and the wrestlers protesting at Jantar Mantar here.


The Opposition party said that party MP Deepender Hooda was detained by police when he went to the spot after hearing about the ”atrocities” of Delhi Police.

A scuffle broke out late Wednesday night between wrestlers and some policemen at the Jantar Mantar here, leading to head injuries to a couple of protesters.

The wrestlers have alleged that they were beaten up by the police. In the early hours Thursday, Hooda tweeted in Hindi, ”When I reached Jantar Mantar to enquire about the condition of our daughters, the Delhi Police took me into custody outside the protest site and has now brought me to the Vasant Vihar Police Station.” Tagging a video of Olympics bronze medallist Sakshi Malik breaking down and her colleague Vinesh Phogat consoling her, the Congress said in a tweet in Hindi, ”These are the daughters of our country, safeguarded the country’s honour and won us many medals. Today the police of Home Minister Amit Shah are misbehaving with them.” Their only crime is that they are raising their voice against exploitation, the Congress said. ”Narendra Modi ji, why are you doing this injustice?” the party said. In another tweet in Hindi, the Congress said, ”Congress MP Deepender Hooda ji reached the spot as soon as he came to know about the atrocities of Delhi Police on the daughters of the country.” Congress stands firmly with the daughters of the country, the party said, and added, ”the clear message is – don’t be afraid, we are together with you.” According to protestors, two wrestlers Rahul Yadav and Dushyant Phogat were injured. Phogat too has received head injuries. Several wrestlers who have won awards at international competitions have been protesting at Jantar Mantar, demanding that the government make public the findings of an oversight panel that investigated the sexual harassment charges against Wrestling Federation of India chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. The Delhi Police has filed two FIRs against Singh on allegations of sexual harassment levelled against the BJP MP by seven women wrestlers. The wrestlers have asserted that they would not leave the protest site until Singh is arrested. They resumed their sit-in last week and demanded that the findings of the panel that probed the allegations be made public. Congress general secretary Randeep Singh Surjewala also slammed the government over the issue.

In a tweet, the Rajya Sabha MP said, ”Save India’s Daughters from BJP! Shameful, Shocking & Disgraceful! Is this how you empower Nari Shakti? India’s athletes are being maltreated only because the offender Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh is BJP leader, BJP MP & an associate of PM Modi.” ”This is a Black Day for Indian Sports,” Surjewala said and wondered if anyone has any reason anymore to encourage their daughters to bring laurels to India.


”Is it not true that offender BJP MP has direct protection of PM?” Surjewala said.

”Who’ll give justice to India’s Daughters? Why is Modi Government ordering Delhi Police to harass and humiliate our daughters in the middle of the night?” he said.

The politician also alleged that the Delhi Police was working at the behest of Shah to intimidate the protesting wrestlers.

”Can there be a more inhumane treatment of our Sportspersons? Isn’t it true that first Modi Govt ordered Delhi Police to scuffle with Ex Servicemen demanding One Rank, One Pension and is now scuffling with India’s athletes and Sportsmen & women, who won medals for India by sheer dint of their hard work?” Surjewala, who hails from Haryana said.

”Justice is dead! This black day will always be remembered as the day humanity died at Jantar Mantar,” he added.


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