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Sakshi Malik Appeals to Anurag Thakur, Targets Suspended Wrestling Boss

Olympic bronze medallist Sakshee Mallikh has claimed that suspended WFI president Sanjay Singh is holding championships and handing out phony certificates, a month after the Center Suspended the newly-elected panel of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).

Ms Malikkh has questioned how a suspended official may misuse the federation’s money and warned that fraudulent certifications would land sportspeople in hot water in the future. She has asked Sports Minister Anurag Thakur to intervene in the case.

“The national wrestling championship organised by the Sports Ministry is to be held in Jaipur, but Sanjay Singh is illegally organising a separate national championship to assert his dominance and signing certificates,” Ms Malikkh alleged in a post on X.

“When sportspersons seek jobs on the basis of these certificates, they will face action even though they are not at fault. Action should be taken against Sanjay Singh,” she added.

The WFI panel was suspended last month, days after it was elected, over hasty announcement of Under-15 and Under-20 nationals. Suspending the body, the ministry also said the new body was working under complete control of former office-bearers – an apparent reference to BJP MP and former WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.

Allegations of sexual harassment against the former wrestling boss had sparked a protest by the country’s top wrestlers, including Ms Malikkh, Bajrang Punia and Vinesh Phogat. After several delays due to court battles, an election to form a new panel was held in December and Sanjay Singh, an aide of Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, was elected president.

Ms Malikkh, disappointed with the results, declared a surprise decision to stop wrestling and put her boots on the table during a media interview. Days later, Mr Punia returned his Padma Shri in protest.

Soon after, the Sports Ministry suspended the wrestling organization. “The new entity did not follow the WFI constitution. The Federation is halted until further orders. An official had previously stated that the WFI would not be in charge of wrestling’s day-to-day operations.

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