Indian police detain protesting wrestlers
AFP | New Delhi
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
Indian police detained on Sunday several wrestlers including Olympic medallists as well as dozens of their supporters as they attempted to march to parliament in New Delhi, an AFP reporter at the scene said.
A group of wrestlers have held a sit-in since last month demanding the arrest of Brij Bhushan Singh, the wrestling federation chief, over allegations of sexual harassment and intimidation.
On Sunday the wrestlers attempted to march to India's new parliament just as it was being inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi but they were halted by hundreds of police.
Among those detained and hauled away into buses were Olympic bronze medallists Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia.
"We respect our athletes, but we will not let there be any disturbance in the inauguration," broadcaster NDTV quoted a senior police official as saying.
Security in the national capital was tightened ahead of the inauguration of the new parliament building by Modi.
Personnel also stood guard on the borders of Delhi after a group of farmers attempted to enter the city to support the protesting wrestlers.
Earlier this month, dozens of farmers broke down police barricades in the city to join the protest.
Wrestling federation chief Singh, who is from Modi's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, has denied the accusations.