Farmer leader, Naresh Tikait, on Tuesday, stepped in to prevent wrestlers from immersing their hard-earned medals in the holy Ganga river, seeking a five-day delay. The leader intervened as the wrestlers, including Sakshi Malik, Vinesh Phogat, and Bajrang Punia, had planned to symbolically immerse their medals in protest.
Naresh Tikait said,
“Entire Indian government is saving one man (WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh). There will be a Khap meeting tomorrow.”
He further said,
“Our brave women athletes have won these medals with a lot of hard work. they are the pride of the nation, they should not take these kinds of steps, so they agreed.”
Protesting wrestlers, including Sakshi Malik, Vinesh Phogat, and Bajrang Punia, accompanied by a multitude of supporters, had made their way to Har ki Pauri to immerse their hard-earned medals in the holy waters of the Ganga river.
As a large crowd gathered at Har ki Pauri, the wrestlers, visibly distraught, prepared to submerge their world and Olympic medals. Sakshi, Vinesh, and Sangeeta, Vinesh’s cousin, shed tears as their husbands offered consolation in the midst of a protective ring of supporters.
After reaching Har ki Pauri, the wrestlers stood in silence for around 20 minutes. They stayed still, clutching their accolades and displaying their distress. Their next plan was to embark on a hunger strike at India Gate until their demands were met. However, farmer leader Naresh Tikait intervened and convinced them not to immerse their medals, promising a Khap meeting to address the matter.