May 28, 2023

Arrest the Accused BJP Leaders

A JOINT protest by Jammu & Kashmir state committee of CITU, Jammu & Kashmir Kisan Tehrik and Democratic Women’s Association was held on May 18, in front of the divisional commissioner office, Panama Chowk, Jammu in support of the ongoing struggle by women wrestlers in New Delhi. Hundreds of workers and activists participated in the protest, holding placards in their hands and chanted slogans in support of women wrestlers and against the BJP government.   
While addressing the protesters and media, Hari Singh, the regional secretary of CPI(M), emphasized that the ongoing struggle by women wrestlers in New Delhi, aims to combat sexual harassment, and repression inflicted by certain officials within the wrestling federation. Furthermore, Singh condemned the lack of action by the BJP government at the centre, which has sparked nationwide attention. As a result, planned and spontaneous protest actions by various mass organisations and people came up throughout the country. Singh demanded swift action against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, the chief of the Wrestler Federation of India.

Om Parkash, the working president of the state CITU, expressed that the ongoing protest demanding the immediate arrest and action against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, MP and chief of the Wrestlers Federation of India (WFFI), has compelled the police to lodge an FIR. However, he highlighted the lack of legal action taken against the culprits thus far. Parkash urged for the prompt arrest of the perpetrators involved in the case. Furthermore, he issued a warning to the current ruling dispensation, stating that any further delays in taking action would result in a larger joint movement across the country.
Kishore Kumar, president of J&K Kisan Tehrik, stated that prominent organisations such as the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS), All India Agricultural Workers Union (AIAWU), All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA), Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), and Students’ Federation of India (SFI) have already extended their full support and solidarity to the ongoing determined struggle of the women wrestlers. These organisations have jointly organised protests throughout the country today, while also conducting independent actions. Workers, peasants, agricultural workers, women, youth, and students across the nation have taken to the streets, demanding immediate and strong punitive action against the heinous offender and his removal from the current position in the relevant sports federation.

Jagdish Sharma, general secretary of the state CITU, informed that today, protests in support of women wrestlers are taking place across the state, in both regions, at various workplaces and district headquarters. He mentioned that CITU is actively participating in these protests alongside other organisations. The objective of these demonstrations is to draw the attention of all sections of society towards the tortures and sexual harassment faced by the women wrestlers. Additionally, the protests aim to denounce the BJP Government's negligent and indulgent approach towards the culprits involved, one of whom is an MP belonging to the ruling party. Sharma assured that they will stand firmly beside the struggling wrestlers until justice is achieved for them.
Others who spoke on this occasion included Sewa Ram, Sohan Lal, Romesh Chand, Muzaffer Wani, Jia Lal Parihar, Sunita Bhagar, Gita Devi, and Anita.