ANI Photo | “Tactics of returning awards should be stopped,” says Anil Vij as wrestlers return their awards

Haryana Home Minister Anil Vij on Wednesday said that “tactics of returning awards should be stopped”. Vij’s statement came in connection to the announcement of wrestler Vinesh Phogat returning her Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award and Arjuna Award.
Earlier, ace wrestler Bajrang Punia has also returned his Padma Shri.
“These tactics of returning awards should be stopped. The players have earned these awards. Their awards cannot be taken back by whichever organisation they are issued… The awards honour our nation and they should not think of returning it,” said Anil Vij.
India’s wrestling has seen a major shift since the conclusion of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) elections last week.
Former WFI Chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh’s aide Sanjay Singh was elected as the new president on Thursday, which caused a major disappointment among the wrestlers who were protesting against former WFI head, Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.
After Singh’s victory in the WFI elections, emotional Sakshi broke down as she left the venue announcing her retirement from wrestling while addressing a press conference in the national capital. However, the WFI body witnessed a major twist after the Union Sports Ministry suspended the newly elected body.
The decision came close on the heels of the newly elected WFI chief Sanjay Singh announcing the hosting of the U-15 and U-20 nationals at Nandini Nagar in the Gond district of Uttar Pradesh by the end of the year.
In light of the recent developments, Vinesh took to X, to announce that she will be returning her Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award and Arjuna Award.
Earlier, following the ongoing controversy the Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar also had advised the players to “focus more on sports”.
CM Khattar said, “Players should focus more on sports. The issue that came up regarding association is encircled by politics. Elections take place democratically so now they should accept it”

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