In recent days, news organisations have carried contradictory reports about the protest by wrestlers demanding the arrest of Wrestling Federation of India’s chief Brij Bhushan Singh for alleged sexual harassment.
Singh has been booked under several sections of the Indian Penal Code and the non-bailable Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act, based on allegations by seven women wrestlers including a minor. However, Singh, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s Lok Sabha MP, has not been arrested so far.
This week, some news organisations reported citing unidentified persons that some wrestlers had halted the protes, and that the underaged wrestler had withdrawn her initial statement about Singh. However, other news outlets citied the wrestlers themselves and their relatives to report that this was incorrect, reflecting a media narrative war breaking out even as the Modi government tries to end the protest that, surveys show, is hurting it politically.
On Wednesday evening, after a meeting with sports minister Anurag Thakur, the wrestlers agreed to suspend their protest until June 15.
Wrestlers quitting the protest?
But on Monday, several news organisations and journalists had reported that wrestlers Sakshee Malik and Bajrang Punia were returning to their jobs in the Indians Railways after withdrawing from the protest, which first started in January. The sources for these reports about the wrestlers withdrawing from the protest.