New Delhi: Protests are intensifying from various quarters to the comments made by the President of the Indian Olympic Association PT Usha about the protest being conducted by famous female wrestlers accusing the President of the Indian Wrestling Federation of sexual harassment.
Famous wrestlers like Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik and others took part in a protest last January after accusing BJP MP and President of Indian Wrestling Federation Brij Bhushan Charan Singh of sexual harassment. The Union Sports Ministry constituted a 6-member committee headed by boxer Mary Kom to investigate the matter. The committee conducted an inquiry and submitted its report. However, no action was taken against Brij Bhushan Charan Singh.
Following this, Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik and other players started protesting again last Sunday in Delhi’s Jandar Mantar area. The protest continued on Friday for the 6th day. Meanwhile, the Indian Olympic Association had appointed a panel comprising former shooter Suma Shirur, Indian Wushu Association president Bhupendra Singh Bajwa and a retired High Court judge to manage the Indian Wrestling Federation. The Executive Committee meeting of the Indian Olympic Association was held in Delhi yesterday.
PT Usha comments: Indian Olympic Association president PT Usha, who met the media after the meeting, said, “Wrestlers protesting on the streets is tantamount to indiscipline. It will tarnish India’s image,” he said.
A fair fight: Various parties are opposing this opinion of PT Usha. Thiruvananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor of the Congress party said in his Twitter post, “It is not nice of you to denigrate the righteous struggle of your female athletes who are facing unwanted sexual harassment again and again. Their standing up for their rights will not tarnish the reputation of the nation. Do not ignore their concerns and listen to them and take action.” .
Let us sing together: Shiv Sena (Uddhav Thackeray’s team) MP Priyanka Sathurvedi tweeted, “While the victims are fighting for justice, the country’s reputation is tarnished by sex accused MPs walking freely. Forgive me ma’am, we all need to come together and raise our voices for our female heroes. Don’t blame on reputation.” No. Each of them has won medals for the country and made us proud,” he said.
Do you smell the roses? – Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra, PT Usha says women wrestlers taking to the streets to protest tarnishes the country’s image. But even after the Supreme Court ordered a case against the ruling MP, who was president of the Indian Wrestling Federation for years, for harassment and abuse of power, the Delhi Police Non-prosecution makes India smell the roses, doesn’t it?” asked that. And posted the hash tag stopcrawling.
Why the silence? – In another tweet, wrestler Vignesh Phogat posted an interview with an English media asking leading cricketers why others are silent and are you all scared and said, “Yes Vignesh – I ask the same question everyday to leading journalists, industrialists, actors, sportspersons. Cowardice is ours. It will not build a nation. Cowardice will not redeem anything,” he said.
Dear @PTUshaOfficial, it does not become you to disparage the justified protests of your fellow sportspersons in the face of repeated & wanton sexual harassment. Their standing up for their rights does not “tarnish the image of the nation”. Ignoring their concerns — instead of…
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) April 28, 2023