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Delhi Police Took 7 Days for FIR Against Brij Bhushan, 7 Hours to Book us: Vinesh Phogat

Protesting wrestlers Sakshi, Vinesh, Bajrang booked after ‘scuffle’ with Police; vow to continue stir.
Delhi Police Took 7 Days for FIR Against Brij Bhushan, 7 Hours to Book us: Vinesh Phogat

Image Courtesy: PTI

New Delhi: The Delhi Police booked wrestlers Sakshi Malik, Vinesh Phogat and Bajrang Punia along with their supporters on charges of rioting and obstructing public servant in discharge of duty after they were detained while marching to the new Parliament building on Sunday.

The police said 700 people were detained across Delhi, including 109 protesters at Jantar Mantar.

Reacting to the development, Vinesh Phogat said while it took the Delhi Police seven days to register an FIR against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, it didn't even take seven hours to book those who were holding a protesting "peacefully".

The wrestlers had been protesting at Jantar Mantar against Singh since April 23 demanding his arrest for alleged sexual harassment of seven women grapplers, including a minor.

"The FIR has been registered at Parliament Street police station under New Delhi district against the organisers of the protest, including wrestlers Sakshi Malik, Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia and Sangeeta Phogat, and others who were part of the scuffle that took place at Jantar Mantar today with the police," a senior police officer said.

The FIR has been registered under Sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) and 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), the officer said.

Sections 352 (assault or criminal force otherwise than on grave provocation), 147 (rioting) and 149 (unlawful assembly) of the IPC and Section 3 (mischief causing damage to public property) of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act have also been invoked, he said.

Vinesh Phogat criticised the Delhi Police for filing the FIR against the protesters.

"It takes seven days for the Delhi Police to register an FIR against Brij Bhushan, who has sexually assaulted (female wrestlers), and it didn't take even seven hours to register an FIR against us for protesting peacefully. Has dictatorship started in this country? The whole world is watching how the government is treating its players. A new history is being written," the world championship medallist tweeted in Hindi. 

Vinesh Phogat, Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia were among those detained after a scuffle with security personnel who tried to stop them from marching to the new Parliament building as it was being inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Wrestlers and police personnel shoved and pushed each other when Vinesh Phogat, her cousin sister Sangeeta Phogat and Sakshi Malik tried to breach the barricades.

Immediately after the wrestlers were pushed into buses and taken to different locations, the police personnel began clearing the protest site at Jantar Mantar, removing cots, mattresses, coolers, fans and the tarpaulin ceiling along with other belongings of the wrestlers.

All the female wrestlers who were detained have been released and the male wrestlers will also be released soon, a senior officer had earlier said.

Taking to Twitter, Olympic medallist Sakshi Malik, however, vowed to continue their sit-in at Jantar Mantar.

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