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"We do not consider Ad-hoc committee...": Suspended WFI President Sanjay Singh

Gonda: Sanjay Singh, the President of the suspended Wrestling Federation of India (WFI), asserted on Monday that they do not acknowledge the suspension imposed by the Sports Ministry on their newly-elected body, nor do they recognize the Ad-hoc committee.
Earlier in the day, the Union Sports Ministry declared that the suspended WFI lacks the authority to organize the Senior National Championships. Any tournament hosted by them would be deemed "unsanctioned" and "unrecognized."
After the conclusion of the WFI elections last month, the Sports Ministry suspended the body three days later after the newly elected WFI president Sanjay Singh announced the hosting of the U-15 and U-20 nationals at Nandini Nagar in the Gonda district of Uttar Pradesh by the end of the year. At the same time, following its decision, the Ministry instructed the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) to form an ad-hoc committee to manage and control the affairs of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).
In defiance, Singh refused to acknowledge the committee, stating that they are an "autonomous body" and cannot be banned.
"The Wrestling Federation has not been suspended. Only the activities are halted. We are an autonomous body, it cannot be banned. We are doing our work... We do not consider the Ad-hoc committee..." Singh told the reporters on Monday.
"It has come to the notice of the Ministry that you have issued a Circular bearing No. WFI/Senior National/Maharashtra/2024 dated 06.01.2024 on the letterhead of the Wrestling Federation of India regarding conduct of Senior National Wrestling Championship 2023 at Pune (Maharashtra) from 2931 January 2024," Ministry said in a letter.
"As per this Ministry's order dated 24.12.2023, you have no authority to issue such a Circular or to use the letterhead of the Wrestling Federation of India wherein you claim affiliation of the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports," the letter added.
"You must immediately cease and desist using the letterhead of the Wrestling Federation of India for such prohibited purposes and using the name, logos and insignia of the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Government of India in violation of the provisions of the National Sports Development Code of India, 2011(Sports Code) and the Emblems and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act, 1950. Any championships or competitions organized by you the suspended Executive Committee members of the WFI - will be treated as unsanctioned and unrecognized competitions," the letter read.
"Certificates of participation and medals won in championships conducted by the WFI will be of no consequence and will not be considered for eligibility under any scheme of the government or appointment to government jobs/to get admission in school and colleges under sports quota, sports awards, etc. Until further orders, only National Wrestling Championships for various age categories organized under the supervision of the IOA-appointed Ad hoc Committee for Wrestling will be treated as sanctioned and recognized championships for wrestling under the Sports Code and all government benefits will only accrue to the sportspersons participating in such National championships organized by the Ad hoc Committee," the letter added.
India's wrestling has seen a major shift since the conclusion of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) elections. 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.
Meanwhile, Olympic medalist Bajrang Punia returned his Padma Shri award, and two-time World Championships medalist Vinesh Phogat announced that she will be returning her Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award and Arjuna Award after ace wrestler Bajrang Punia also returned his Padma Shri.

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