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Posted at: Sep 17, 2019, 9:03 PM; last updated: Sep 17, 2019, 9:03 PM (IST)

Decision to enter politics my own, always wanted to take the plunge: Babita Phogat

Decision to enter politics my own, always wanted to take the plunge: Babita Phogat
Babita Phogat. Photo credit: Twitter/BabitaPhogat

Chandigarh, September 17

International wrestler Babita Phogat on Tuesday said the decision to enter politics was her own and growing up in a family connected with politics, she always wanted to take the plunge in this field.

Babita (29) became a household name after 'Dangal', a film about the struggles of her father and noted wrestling coach Mahavir Singh Phogat to train her and her sister Geeta Phogat, became a runaway hit.

Babita and Mahavir Phogat joined the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on August 12.

"The decision to enter politics is my own. My family has been connected with politics, my mother has been a village sarpanch twice and my uncle too has served as a village head twice. So these things acted as a motivation for me since childhood," Babita said.

She was interacting with reporters here during the launch of her father's biography, 'Akhara' (wrestling ring).

The Arjuna awardee exuded confidence that like sports, she will make a mark in politics too and motivate many women to take the political plunge.

"The way I motivated women in the field of wrestling, in politics too I will motivate women. I will be there to help them. Even if they need my help in the middle of the night, I will be there for them," she said.

"Women, players and youth will be my priority and for them I will keep doing one or the other thing," she said.

"We will be able to motivate women only when we come forward," she added.

Asked whether the BJP will give her a ticket from Badhra or Dadri in Charkhi Dadri district for the upcoming Haryana Assembly polls, Babita said the party will take a call on that.

"I have been a fighter and as fighters we are taught to be ready for everything. Whatever responsibility my party entrusts me with, I will try to live up to its expectations," she said.

Asked which assembly constituency she would like to contest from, she said, "Badhra, Dadri or anywhere else, whichever seat my party decides on, I am ready."

The assembly polls in Haryana are slated to be held in October.

Explaining her decision to join the BJP, Babita said she was impressed by the party's ideology and the bold decisions taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government.

"I wanted to connect with a nationalist party. For a sportsperson, country is above all. Now that I have joined politics, here too I will keep the country above everything else," she said.

She also lauded the Centre's decision to abrogate Jammu and Kashmir's special status under Article 370, saying this government did what its predecessors could not do in the last 70 years.

Mahavir Phogat said he has no desire to contest elections and will be happy if Babita gets a ticket.

Though he has joined politics, he said 'akhara' is his life and he continues to coach wrestlers. - PTI

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