New Delhi [India]: 15 people including a leader of Bharatiya Kisan Union on their way to Delhi’s Jantar Mantar to support the wrestlers’ protest were detained by the police at Haryana’s Singhu border on Thursday.
Bharatiya Kisan Union leader Abhimanyu Kohar and others were on their way to join the wrestlers’ protest against the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief Brij Bhushan Singh over alleged sexual harassment complaints against him. “All 15 people were detained from Haryana’s Singhu border area,” Delhi Police officials said.
All Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCPs) have been asked by senior officials to be on alert in their districts after the administration received inputs that a number of people are coming to Jantar Mantar to join the protest, the official said.
All the DCPs have also been asked to keep a check on the border areas of the national capital. “DCPs of all districts in Delhi have been asked to be on alert in their districts, especially in the border areas. Special care is to be taken on roads which go towards Central Delhi, barricades have been put up at several places. Police have received some inputs that a large number of people can reach Jantar Mantar where the wrestlers are protesting,” Delhi Police said.
A scuffle broke out between the protesting wrestlers and Delhi Police at the protest site on Wednesday night. The wrestlers claimed they were manhandled and abused by the police personnel.
Wrestlers alleged that drunk Delhi Police personnel manhandled them when they wanted to bring in mattresses to sleep at night after daylong rain.
“We were bringing the beds since we were facing trouble sleeping due to rain. Sakshi is crying. This is the respect they are giving to our daughters, abusing them,” said the Olympic medalist Bajrang Punia to media.
The World Championships and Commonwealth Games medalist Vinesh Phogat also accused the policemen of being drunk, pushing, and abusing women protestors.
However, the Delhi Police on Thursday said that the supporters of wrestlers became aggressive after they were stopped from taking folding beds at the protest site which they were not allowed, leading to the chaos.
“Folding beds were brought to the protest site in Jantar Mantar. Since there was no permission, we didn’t allow it, so some of the supporters of the protesting wrestlers tried to take out the beds from the truck and this led to an altercation,” DCP Pranav Tayal said.
DCP Tayal further said that the wrestlers have been asked to file a complaint and the medical check-up of the policeman would be conducted on whom “drunk” allegations were raised.
“We have told the wrestlers to complain about their grievances and will take appropriate action…medical check-up of the Policeman on whom they’ve raised allegations, being conducted…,” the DCP said.
Ace wrestlers Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia, Sakshee Mallikh and with other top grapplers were continuously protesting against sexual harassment charges against the WFI chief; they are demanding the arrest of Brij Bhushan.
The ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has called a meeting of its MLAs, councillors and party officials in connection with the matter on Thursday.
“AAP Delhi state convenor Gopal Rai has called the meeting at 12.00 noon,” an official statement by the party said.