Amid continued protest from prominent wrestlers at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) formed a seven-member committee on Friday to investigate the allegations against the WFI chief. The committee includes well-known athletes such as boxer MC Mary Kom and wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt.
The commission will investigate the allegations made by grapplers, including World Cup and Olympic medalists, against the president of the Wrestling Federation of India, Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. Those who made the allegations include decorated athletes such as Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik and Ravi Dahiya.
Besides Mary Kom and Dutt, the panel also includes archer Dola Banerjee and Indian Weightlifting Federation of India (IWLF) President Sahdev Yadav. The IOA made the decision Friday at its emergency Executive Council meeting.
Along with PT Usha, the meeting was attended by co-secretary Kalyan Chaubey, Abhinav Bindra and Yogeshwar Dutt. Olympian Shiva Keshvan was a special invitee in the meeting.
The decision came after the protesting wrestlers contacted the IOA earlier in the day demanding an investigation into their allegations. The wrestlers had alleged financial embezzlement by WFI and that the coaches and sports science staff at the national camp are “absolutely incompetent,” in their letter to IOA.
Meanwhile, the WFI chief refuted the allegations against him. He compared the wrestlers’ protest to Shaheen Bagh’s excitement. The BJP leader will answer the charges on January 22 after the federation’s AGM, his son Prateek Bhushan Singh said on Friday.
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(with input from PTI)