WFI Sexual Harassment Case: Harbhajan Singh First Cricketer To Speak Out For Protesting Wrestlers, Prays For Justice
Former Indian cricketer and Member of Parliament Harbhajan Singh has spoken out on the tussle between protesting wrestlers and the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. Harbhajan is the first big name from Indian cricket to have come out in full support of the grapplers who have been sitting at Jantar Mantar in Delhi for four days now in second round of the protests to oust WFI president. The WFI chief has been accused of sexual harassment by many female wrestlers. Singh has also been accused of intimidating wrestlers after they took to streets to protest against his wrongdoings.
Also Read | Vinesh Phogat Questions Cricketers’ Silence Over Wrestlers Protest, Asks ‘Abhi Kya Ho Gaya?’
Taking part in the #IStandWithWrestlers social media campaign to support the grapphers, Harbhajan said that he was pained to see the ‘pride of the nation’ out on the streets protesting. “Sakshi, Vinesh are India’s pride. I am pained as a sportsperson to find pride of our country coming out to protest on the streets. I pray that they get justice. #IStandWithWrestlers,” tweeted Harbhajan.
Sakshi, Vinesh are India’s pride. I am pained as a sportsperson to find pride of our country coming out to protest on the streets. I pray that they get justice.#IStandWithWrestlers pic.twitter.com/hwD9dKSFNv
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) April 28, 2023
Not to forget, earlier, Vinesh Phogat had accused the Indian cricketers of showing double standards as they chose to speak up on the Black Lives Matter movement but remained silence on the struggles of their fellow athletes.
Neeraj, Bindra voice concern
Earlier, India’s Olympic gold medallists Neeraj Chopra and Abhinav Bindra too had spoken up on the matter between wrestlers and WFI. Neeraj, via a statement on his social media account, lent support to the wrestlers like Bajrang Punia, Vinesh Phogat and Sakski Malik. He wrote, “It hurst me to see our athletes on the streets demanding justice. They have worked hard to represent our great nation and make us proud. As a nation, we are responsible for safeguarding the integrity and dignity of every individual, athlete or not.”
The star javelin thrower further wrote that the matter is sensitive and it should be dealt in an impartial and transparent manner. “What’s happening should never happen. This is a sensitive issue, and must be dealt with in an impartial and transparent manner. Pertaining authorities must take quick action in order to ensure that justice is served,” Neeraj Chopra added.
As athletes, we train hard every day to represent our country on the international stage. It is deeply concerning to see our athletes finding it necessary to protest on the streets regarding the allegations of harassment in the Indian wrestling administration. My heart goes out_
— Abhinav A. Bindra OLY (@Abhinav_Bindra) April 26, 2023
Bindra too had tweeted on favour of the wrestlers, saying the sight of protesting wrestlers is deeply concerning. “As athletes, we train hard every day to represent our country on the international stage. It is deeply concerning to see our athletes finding it necessary to protest on the streets regarding the allegations of harassment in the Indian wrestling administration,” Bindra tweeted. Bindra said that all the concerns raised by top wrestlers should be addressed by the administration.
“This incident highlights the crucial need for a proper safeguarding mechanism that can prevent harassment and ensure justice for those affected. We must work towards creating a safe and secure environment for all athletes to thrive in,” he added.
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