The Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief, Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, has responded to the protesting wrestlers.
The wrestlers had gathered in Haridwar on Tuesday (30 May) to protest against Singh — who is facing allegations from female wrestlers of sexual harassment — and threatened to throw their medals into the Ganges.
Singh said Tuesday that the charges against him were being investigated by Delhi Police.
He clarified that the wrestlers' decision to throw their winnings into the river was solely made by the wrestlers as a statement.
"The matter is under investigation by the Delhi Police. If there's any truth to the charges (levelled against him by the wrestlers), an arrest will be made," said the WFI chief, a six-time BJP MP.
The wrestlers came to the holy city to offer their medals to the Ganges, but farmer leader Naresh Tikait convinced them not to.
Wrestlers later gave authorities a five-day ultimatum to take action against the WFI chief.
"Today, they went to Haridwar to immerse their medals in the Ganga. But later, they handed them to Tikait. It's their stand, what can we do?" Singh said.
Olympians Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik, and Vinesh Phogat arrived in Haridwar to immerse their medals in the Ganges.
They have demanded the WFI chief's removal and arrest over allegations of sexual harassment.
Delhi Police had detained them on Sunday (28 May) while they attempted to march and stage a demonstration at the new Parliament building.
"You saw everything that happened on May 28, how police treated us and the way they arrested us. We were protesting peacefully, our place has been taken away and the next day serious cases and FIR were filed against us. Have the wrestlers committed any crime by demanding justice for the sexual harassment that happened to them? The police and the system are treating us like criminals, while the oppressor is taking jibe moving freely. He is even openly talking about changing the POSCO Act," the wrestlers said in a tweet.
"It is not less than death for us thinking of returning medals but how can we live compromising our self-respect? We don't need these medals anymore. If we speak against exploitation, they prepare to put us in jail," they added.
"We are going to shed these medals in the Ganga. Our medals which we earned after hard work are as sacred as River Ganga. These medals are sacred for the entire country and the right place to keep the sacred medal can be holy Ganga and not our unholy system which masquerades us and stands with our oppressor after taking advantage of us," they said.
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