SIT formed to probe sexual harassment allegations against WFI chief: Delhi Police inform court

Skashi Malik, Bajrang Punia, Vinesh Phogat and Sangita Phogat
Wrestlers Sakshi Malik, Bajrang Punia, Vinesh Phogat and Sangita Phogat at the protest site in New Delhi. Photo: IANS

New Delhi: The Delhi Police on Friday informed a court here that a Special Investigation Team (SIT) has been formed to investigate the sexual harassment allegations against Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.

In the Rouse Avenue court of Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Harjeet Singh Jaspal, Public Prosecutor Atul Srivastava submitted that a status report has been filed in the case under a sealed cover and that it must not be disclosed as the case involves sexual offences.

The SIT team has 10 officials, including a female Deputy Commissioner of Police.

"The team has been set up to collect inputs from different states based on complaints filed by female wrestlers," said the official.

The court was also informed that the statement of one of the victims before the concerned magistrate under Section 164 of Criminal Procedure Code will be recorded in the day.

The court has posted the matter for hearing on May 27.

On Wednesday, the court had sought from the Delhi Police a status report in the matter.

Since April 23, prominent Indian wrestlers such as Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik, and Vinesh Phogat, who have achieved Olympic and World Championships recognition, have been staging a protest at Jantar Mantar against the WFI chief.

Farmers have also extended their support to wrestlers and had arrived from Haryana and Punjab on Monday to join the protest.

During the hearing, the judge had issued notice to police on the protesting wrestlers' plea seeking monitoring of the investigation and recording of statements of the alleged victims before the court.

On Tuesday, Delhi Commission for Women also issued summons to Deputy Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) Pranav Tayal for failing to arrest the accused in the matter of sexual harassment of women wrestlers.

The women wrestlers had approached the Supreme Court and two FIRs were registered on April 28, one under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act for allegedly sexually harassing a minor girl and another for sexual harassment of other complainants.

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