Wrestler Sakshi Malik addressed the media. file. | Photo Credit: ANI
Two days after the Delhi Police forced the wrestlers to remove and clear their protest site at Jantar Mantar, wrestler Sakshi Malik announced that the wrestlers would sit in a “fast until death at India Gate”. Malik also said that the protesters will send their medals to the river Ganga. The medals will be immersed today at 6 pm in Haridwar.
On Sunday, top Indian wrestlers, including Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia, who have been living in makeshift tents at New Delhi’s Jantar Mantar for nearly 35 days to protest against the head of the Wrestling Federation of India ( WFI) Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh accused. of sexual harassment, were stopped by security personnel as they tried to march towards the new Parliament building during its inauguration.
Referring to Sunday’s action, Malik wrote in a post on Twitter, “Are there female wrestlers who have committed any crime by seeking justice for the sexual harassment that happened to them? The police and the system are treating us like criminals, while the oppressor is suppressing us in open meetings…He is even openly talking about changing the POCSO Act. We women wrestlers feel like we have nothing left in this country.”
“We remember the moments when we won medals at the Olympics, World Championships. Now we question why we won them in the first place. Did we win so that the system treats us badly? Drag us and then make us criminals,” added Malik.
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Wrestlers Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia along with other protesters were booked for rioting and obstructing a public servant on May 28 after a scuffle with security personnel who tried to stop them from marching towards the new Parliament building during its construction. inaugurated. Soon after, the Delhi Police cleared the site of their over-month-long sit-in at Jantar Mantar and said they would not be allowed to return there.
On Monday, Sakshi Malik said the wrestlers and organizers have reunited and held meetings throughout the season to work on the future strategy.
“We will sit fast to death at India Gate,” Malik said on Twitter today. “India Gate is the place of our martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the country. We are not as righteous as our martyrs, but while playing at the international level, we also feel like soldiers,” she added.
‘We don’t need these medals anymore’
Malik also mentioned the medals won by the wrestlers who are now sitting in protest against WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, saying that the medals adorning their necks are meaningless now.
“The question came as to who will return [the medals to],” said Malik.
In his post, Malik came down heavily on President Droupadi Murmu as well as Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He went on to say that the wrestlers did not feel comfortable returning the medals to Ms. Murmu as the President “who himself was a woman… just kept watching, sitting only two kilometers away from us, but said nothing.”
Referring to the Prime Minister, Malik said that Mr. Modi had once called them “sons of his house.” However, the wrestlers are against returning the medals to him, “because he never once took care of the daughters of his house. Instead, our tyrant was invited to the inauguration of the new Parliament and he posed for pictures in a bright white dress. Its whiteness eats away at us. It’s like you’re saying I’m the system.”
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“Where is our place in this shining system, where is the place of the daughters of India? Have we become just a slogan or just an agenda to come to power? We don’t need these medals for wearing them, this system is just doing its propaganda… and then exploiting us. If we speak out against that exploitation, he is preparing to put us in jail,” he added.
Malik said that the medals will be sent to river Ganga at 6 pm today in Haridwar. “We will throw these medals to Ganga, because she is mother Ganga. These medals are sacred for the entire nation and the right place to keep the sacred medal can be the holy Mother Ganga and not our unholy system that stands up to our oppressor after taking advantage of us.”