WFI writes to Ministry, rejects all allegations against their chief Brij Bhushan

The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) has sent a reply to the Union Sports Ministry, rejecting all the accusations, including that of sexual harassment, made by the top Indian wrestlers against its president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.

The protesting wrestlers have accused the WFI of arbitrariness, mismanagement, misgovernance and bias in selection as harassment of wrestlers by its coaches and president.

“The WFI is managed by an elected body as per its constitution, and therefore, there is no scope for arbitrariness and mismanagement in WFI by anyone individually, including the president,” the WFI said in its response to the ministry.

“The WFI, in particular, under the sitting president has always acted keeping the best interests of wrestlers in mind. The WFI has enhanced the image of wrestling sport nationally as well as internationally and for the record of this ministry, it is not possible without fair, supportive, clean and strict management of WFI,” it added.

“The WFI for redressal of grievances in respect of Sexual Harassment as required has already constituted a ‘SEXUAL HARASSMENT COMMITTEE’, which consists of the following persons-VN Prasood, Secretary General, WFI: Chairman, Jai Prakash, Olympian, Jt. Secretary, WFI: Convener, Vishal Singh, Executive Member: Member, Debendra Kumar Sahoo, Executive Member, WFI: Member, Sakshi Malik, Arjuna/Dhyanchand Khel Awardee: Member.

“The information about Sexual Harassment Committee of WFI is also already available on the website/portal of WFI public domain. Any aggrieved person/wrestler may approach the said committee for its grievances if any, which committee is bound to inquire as per law. However, no such complaint of any such nature as has been aired by the protestors/wrestlers has been received so far.

“Hence, any such media reports without any specific complaint received can never be taken note of by the WFI Sexual Harassment Committee nor such allegations can be affirmed nor confirmed except to be denied having been so made as a kind of motivated, biased, unfounded, untrue and false bald allegations solely with a view to harm the President, WFI or the Coaches of WFI,” it added.

In the letter, WFI further stated that the “manner and method of protestors/wrestlers to air their allegation by sitting at Dharna and also dong Press Conference certainly is part of a deeper and larger conspiracy” by vested interest either by “putting pressure on some weak wrestlers for vested interest or for gaining ground for themselves by maligning and defaming the management of WFI or its President or the Coaches and not otherwise”.

It further said, “Not any single allegation of sexual harassment is accepted nor has ever been noticed nor found nor so far complained nor reported to sexual harassment committee to WFI, hence allegations to that effect are equally malicious and unfounded without being any truth in the matter except to come to public through media for making soft target to the prestige of the present management of the WFI as well as the sitting President of WFI.”

20230121-174003

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