The family members and supporters of Indian grappler Vishal Kaliraman staged a protest here on Wednesday opposing the direct entry given to Olympic medallist Bajrang Punia at the Asian Games, beginning in Hangzhou on September 23.
Punia was exempted from appearing for the Asian Games trials in July and was sent to Kyrgyzstan to train for the continental showpiece. Vishal, on the other hand, won the 65kg freestyle trials held in Delhi but was still kept on standby for Hangzhou.
Protesting the exemption given to Punia, residents of Sisai gathered at the Krantiman Park here and later reached the mini-secretariat raising slogans.
They also burned an effigy of Punia.
In a memorandum given to the Haryana chief minister through the deputy commissioner, they demanded justice for Vishal.
The wrestler’s elder brother Krishan said that the supporters observed a “black day” on Wednesday.
“We will protest, go on hunger strike, go to court and do whatever is possible,” Krishan said.
Krishan challenged Punia to fight Vishal and whoever wins should go to the Asian Games. “If Vishal wins, he should be sent to Hangzhou,” said Krishan.
Rajbala, Vishal’s mother, alleged that injustice had been done to her son.
“He has been training since the age of eight. Now, when the opportunity came, injustice was done to him. He is also the son of the country and should get justice,” she said.
A few weeks back, a khap panchayat was convened at the Jat Dharamshala in Jind, Haryana, to discuss the issue.
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