Delhi Police has registered an FIR under section 325/34 of the IPC (‘Punishment For Voluntarily Causing Grievous Hurt) on the complaint of Indian mixed martial arts fighter Srikant Sekhar, who alleged he was assaulted by Afghanistan fighter Abdul Azim Badakshi and Afghan fans in a post-fight fracas in New Delhi on Friday.
Sekhar was left with a broken jaw in the alleged incident which took place following the conclusion of the Matrix Fight Night (MFN) promotion.
The promotion is owned by Ayesha Shroff, wife of Bollywood actor Jackie Shroff. According to a statement on their official Facebook account, the promotion is also backed by Bollywood actor Tiger Shroff and his sister Krishna Shroff.
In his statement to the police, Srikant (7 wins - 6 losses) stated that he had had competed in the MFN in New Delhi’s Siri Fort Stadium where he had fought and beaten Sumit Khare, following which he had had a medical check-up and was given the all clear by a doctor.
Sekhar then states that he returned to the side of the cage where a teammate, Seth Rosario, was competing against Zahoor Shah, a mixed martial arts fighter from Afghanistan. Sekhar states that as he was cheering for his teammate, he was hit by a rolled-up paper by supporters of Shah. Sensing the matter was escalating, Sekhar says officials of the MFN promotion advised him to leave the premises.
As Sekhar was walking past the cage, he says he noticed Badakshi (13-3) to his right. In a video of the incident seen by Sportstar , Badakshi, 27, can be seen standing next to Ayesha and Krishna Shroff. In pictures posted on his Instagram account, the Afghan fighter can be seen sitting next to Krishna. After passing the Afghan fighter, Sekhar says in his statement that he was punched twice on the jaw by Badakshi and thought his jaw was broken. Sekhar then states that after he fell to the ground, several members of the crowd punched and kicked him.
Badakshi is one of MFN's highest profile fighters with a 13-3 win loss record.
With the crowd spilling over to the cageside, Sekhar states that the majority of MFN officials tried to protect the celebrities at the venue. In turn, he and his coaches fled the stadium while they were chased by people carrying rods and bricks. He eventually reached a PCR van and was taken by his friends to the hospital.
In the hospital Sekhar underwent surgery to fix his broken jaw. “It was broken pretty badly. They had to put metal plates and screws in my mouth,” he told Sportstar. While Sekhar alleged assault took place on the 24th of this month, he was only able to register his complaint with the Police a day later “I was there at the Hauz Khas police station but I couldn’t say much because my jaw was broken, I was having a headache and I thought there might be some internal bleeding as well because I was punched in the back of my head so hard. I was able to speak to police after the surgery,” he says.
Sekhar says he had no previous enmity with Badakshi. “I had met him in the morning of the fight as well. We even shook hands. I’m guessing the crowd was probably provoking him in their language,” he says.
As things stand, Sekhar, will be out of action for a long time. “I will be out of action for at least a year-and-a-half or two years. What’s going to be my source of income? I have to go to rehab. I got beaten up, I lost money. This is the most extreme thing that’s happened. I don’t have anything against the Afghan people but on that day the audience was miserable,” he says.
In a statement, MFN owner Ayesha Shroff said the promotion will not have any Afghan fighter on their cards in the future. Sportstar has reached out to Badakshi but the Afghan has deleted his social media accounts and has not responded to repeated messages.
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