WFI’s emergency general council meeting in Ayodhya called off

The Wrestling Federation of India’s (WFI) emergency general council meeting, scheduled here for Sunday, was called off after the Sports Ministry directed it to suspend all ongoing activities owing to the various allegations against the sports body and its president.

The ministry Saturday said it has asked the WFI to suspend “all ongoing activities with immediate effect”, including the Ranking Tournament in Gonda, UP, the federation president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh’s stronghold.

Following the wrestlers’ protest, this meeting was seen as being of utmost importance.

The latest development comes after the central government on Saturday evening suspended WFI Assistant Secretary Vinod Tomar. Along with this, the activities of WFI were immediately banned till the completion of the investigation into the allegations of the wrestlers.

After late-night parleys with the protesting star grapplers, Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur on Friday night announced that Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh will ‘step aside’ from the day-to-day affairs of the WFI till the seven-member ‘oversight committee’ led by Olympian MC Mary Kom completes its inquiry into the allegations against him.

The probe committee has been given a mandate of four weeks to submit its report, the minister added.

The wrestlers, who were protesting at Jantar Mantar, called off their protest after a meeting with Union Sports Minister Thakur on Friday.

In a late-night presser on Friday, Thakur, who was accompanied by protesting wrestlers, said an Oversight Committee will be set up by the Ministry for the Wrestling Federation of India. The committee will inquire into the allegations made by prominent sportspersons of sexual misconduct, financial irregularities and administrative lapses and undertake day-to-day administration of the WFI. It will revisit the issues raised by players.

Thakur said the Oversight Committee will complete the enquiry in for weeks and till then, WFI President will step aside from the day-to-day functioning of the federation.

*With agency inputs 

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