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Wrestlers’ Protest: Khap Mahapanchayat Held in Muzaffarnagar, Decision in Kurukshetra on Friday

A Khap committee will be made and will decide who will meet the President and Home Minister to put forth the wrestlers' demands, said BKU leader Naresh Tikait.

Lucknow: A Khap 'mahapanchayat' to discuss the ongoing protest by wrestlers against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who is also a BJP MP, was held in Muzaffarnagar on Thursday. However, the final decision will be announced in a mahapanchayat in Haryana's Kurukshetra on Friday.

In a meeting of Sarv-Khap panchayat in Soram village, Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) president Naresh Tikait said all the major Khaps of Western Uttar Pradesh will extend support to the wrestlers in New Delhi, if their demands are not met within five days.

A Khap committee will be made and it will decide who will meet the President and Home Minister to put forth the wrestlers' demands. The decision by the Khap committee over the same will be announced on Friday in Kurukshetra in Haryana, Tikait, who is also the head of Balyan Khap, told NewsClick over phone.

"The matter was discussed in detail and the mahapanchayat has passed a resolution but it will be disclosed in Kurukshetra on Friday where Khaps from Haryana too will consider our decision," Tikait said, adding that the Khap has given five days to the government to take action, else there will be a massive movement across the country. 

BKU national spokesperson Rakesh Tikait, however, appealed to the wrestlers to not throw their medals in the Ganga river and rather auction them. He also warned that the Delhi borders would be blocked again (as in the year-long farmers’ protest) and added that a nationwide protest would be launched if the wrestlers’ demands were not met.

"We are surprised why there hasn't been any arrest in the POCSO case registered against Brij Bhushan Singh? Will there be amendments in the law that an investigation will take place before arresting someone booked under the POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act?" Singh asked.

The BKU leader and Khaps accused the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of protecting its own men. Singh is a BJP MP from Uttar Pradesh.

"The ruling government is now trying to divide us into castes, but those who fought never had any caste, they were warriors. Same is the case with these girls. First, they left no stone unturned to divide us between Hindu-Muslim, in UP they did Hindu-Muslim. They (BJP government) broke the Lalu Prasad family (Bihar), also divided the Mulayam Singh family (UP). They only know how to divide people. But these girls (wrestlers) belong to one caste, which is the tricolour, and we will not let them be divided," the farmer leaders said in the mahapanchayat. 

The ‘mahapanchayat’ was attended by Khap leaders from Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and Delhi. 

The 'mahapanchayat' was called by BKU leader Naresh Tikait on Wednesday, a day after he and other farmer leaders managed to dissuade some of India's top wrestlers from immersing their medals in the Ganga river to protest police inaction against the WFI chief in two cases of sexual harassment, including a minor.

Chaudhary Yashpal Singh, a Khap leader who attended the mahapanchayat, told NewsClick, "Khap has a lot of anger and its repercussions will be seen in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls if the government fails to deliver justice. The wrestlers are our daughters and we should not divide them on the basis of caste and creed, as they play for the nation and hold  the tricolour," adding that the "entire Indian government is saving one man, like they saved Ajay Mishra Teni (whose son is key accused in the mowing down of farmers in Lakhimpur Kehri) , but the Khap will not this happen this time round."

Meanwhile, some seers in Ayodhya have come out in support of Brij Bhushan Singh, accused of sexual harassment by some of the country’s top women wrestlers.

Read Also:Ayodhya Seers Back Brij Bhushan, Demand POCSO Act Amendment

The seers have started mobilising support for Singh’s Jan Chetna Maha Rally at Ram Katha Park on June 5 and have demanded an amendment to the POCSO Act, 2012. One of the two FIRs lodged against Singh pertains to the alleged sexual harassment of a minor.

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