Now, Deaflympics gold winner Virender to return Padma Shri : The Tribune India

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Now, Deaflympics gold winner Virender to return Padma Shri

Now, Deaflympics gold winner Virender to return Padma Shri


Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 23

Wrestler Virender Singh, who is also known as the ‘goonga pehelwan’, has come out in support of Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia, who have opposed the election of Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh’s loyalist Sanjay Singh as the president of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).

In a dramatic turn of events, Sakshi announced her retirement Thursday, while Bajrang returned his Padma Shri award on Friday. In fact, he left his medallion on a pavement in disgust.

Today, Virender, who is a Deaflympics gold medallist, decided to return his Padma Shri.

He announced his decision on micro-blogging site X that he will return his honour in solidarity with the women wrestlers who had alleged sexual harassment at the hands of Brij Bhushan, who is a powerful BJP MP from Kaiserganj.

“I will return my Padma Shri to Honourable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for my sister and the country’s daughter. I am proud of your daughter and my sister Sakshi Malik,” Virender, who was honoured with the Padma Shri in 2021, wrote on X.

Further, he also encouraged country’s sporting icons Sachin Tendulkar and reigning Olympics gold medallist Neeraj Chopra to raise their voice on the issue.

“I would like to request the top athletes of our country to decide on this issue,” he added, while tagging both Tendulkar and Chopra in his post.

The wrestlers, including Bajrang, Sakshi and Vinesh Phogat, had twice led a sit-in protest at Jantar Mantar against Brij Bhushan for several issues including harassment of women wrestlers and financial mismanagement of funds. While they were assured by the government that none from Brij Bhushan’s family or his close associates will get elected in the new body, Singh’s elevation has left the wrestlers distraught.

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#Bajrang Punia #Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh


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