With the top Indian wrestlers, who were protesting against the Wrestling Federation of India's (WFI) sidelined president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, joining their jobs, there were claims on social media that the players who were set to discard their medals in river Ganga should quit their jobs.
On Monday, Olympians Bajrang Punia, Sakshi Malik and Vinesh Phogat took umbrage to such suggestions and claimed that the people who are trying to discredit them and force them to give up their fight for justice are now coming after their jobs.
In similarly-worded statements, the top wrestlers claimed that when "life is at stake, job is a small thing".The statement came on the heels of several reports claiming that the top grapplers have disassociated themselves from the protest and have rejoined their respective government jobs.
The wrestlers issued a clarification that they have resumed work as Officers on Special Duty (OSD) in the Railways but have not withdrawn their agitation."People who dismissed our medals as worth Rs 15 each are now aiming for our jobs. When life is at stake, job is a small thing in such a situation.
"If the job is seen to be an obstacle in the way of justice, then we will not take even ten seconds to leave it. Do not show fear of job," Punia, Sakshi Malik and Phogat wrote in their tweets on Monday.
The wrestlers vehemently denied that they have ended their protest.
Bajrang Punia also put out a video message on Twitter telling people not to believe in rumours and bogus claims.In his video message, Punia said that there is no rift among the wrestlers and neither have they withdrawn their allegations nor their complaint against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh.
"Please don't believe in claims that there is a rift in the wrestlers. None of the players have disassociated themselves from the agitation nor have we withdrawn the complaint," said Bajrang.he said a campaign is on to discredit them and try and break their unity.
"Delhi Police have through a news agency tried to spread this rumour that the investigation has been closed as there is no evidence supporting the allegations. Please don't believe in such claims," said Punia, claiming that their fight for justice will continue.
A few days back, the protesting wrestlers were detained by the Delhi Police during their march towards the new Parliament building.As the protesters tried to breach the security cordon, a fierce tussle broke out -- the wrestlers and cops pushed, shoved and grappled with one another.
The following day, the wrestlers threatened to discard their medals into the river Ganga in Haridwar and go on an indefinite hunger strike at the India Gate.The wrestlers had gone to Haridwar claiming that they want to drop their medals in the river Ganga.
With many people requesting them, they decided to hand over the medals to the farmers' leaders to take a call.The wrestlers will soon take a call on where to resume their protest.