New Delhi, June 5, 2023- An exclusive CVoter survey for IANS reveals that a majority of Indians stand behind wrestlers who have accused BJP MP and the president of the Wrestling Federation of India Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh of sexual harassment and molestation.
Among the many FIRs filed against him, one is under the stringent POCSO Act that covers crimes against minors. The sample size of the survey is 1,816.
One of the questions in the survey was: Looking at the allegations levels by wrestlers and explanations given by Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who is speaking the truth?
Overall, two thirds of the respondents were of the opinion that the wrestlers were speaking the truth while just about 18 per cent felt the BJP MP was speaking the truth.
Significantly, more than 54 per cent of those who support and vote for the NDA were of the opinion that the wrestlers were speaking the truth with more than 20 per cent having no opinion.
Another open ended question in the CVoter survey asked people of their overall opinion on the ongoing dispute between the wrestlers and Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.
More than 63 per cent of the respondents said it is a fight to bring out the truth about sexual assault against female wrestlers. Only about 8 per cent feel it is a fight for supremacy between wrestlers and the WFI while less than 20 per cent think it is about wrestlers being used by opposition parties for political gains.
A number of wrestlers, including Asian, Commonwealth and Olympic Medal winners like Vinesh Phogat, Sakhshi Malik and Bajrang Punia, initially levelled serious charges against Brij Bhushan Singh in January this year.
A committee was set up by the Ministry of Sports to investigate the allegations.
The matter is now also being monitored by the Supreme Court. After a lull, the protests have intensified since April. The protesting wrestlers are demanding the immediate arrest of Brij Bhushan Singh while he countinues to claim that he is being framed on false charges. (Agency)