Phogat Sisters dropped from National Camp for ‘indiscipline’

New Delhi: Phogat Sisters, who became famous by the Aamir Khan starrer biopic ‘Dangal', have been dropped from the National Camp for the Asian Games, by the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI).

The authorities have found all the four Phogat sisters - Geeta, Babita, Ritu and Sangeeta, guilty of ‘tantrums and indiscipline'. WFI was earlier criticized for being soft towards the sisters, despite many complaints. But it has come out tough when they skipped the mandatory National Camp in Lucknow, and issued them show cause notice, and sought their explanation.

In total, 15 men and women freestyle wrestlers have been issued show cause notice by the WFI and their names removed from the camp list.

"The wrestlers selected for the national camp are expected to physically report to the camp within 3 days. If they have any problems or issues they should go there and report it to the coaches and find a solution. But Geeta, Babita and others (in all 13) did not do that. They were incommunicado. This is serious indiscipline on their part and the WFI felt it's time to pull the plug. So we have told them to sit at home and enjoy," said Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, WFI President.

This probably means that they will not be allowed to take part in the Asiad trials scheduled for later this month. Also, it means that they may not represent the country in the Asian Games to be held in Indonesia in August-September later this year.

Singh, however, hinted that the wrestlers could be given a lifeline if they can come up with a satisfactory explanation for their actions. "Let them first come to us and explain the reasons behind their actions. For now they are out of the national camp," he said.

Another big name to have been barred from the national camp is Satyawart Kadian, husband of Rio Olympics bronze-medallist wrestler Sakshi Malik.

When contacted, Babita said she is yet to receive any show-cause notice from the WFI and cited injury as reason for her absence."I didn't receive anything from the federation. Yes, I haven't joined that camp yet as I am recovering from injuries to both my knees," said Babita.

"I admit I haven't informed the federation yet but I will send an application to them today itself."

As for her sisters, Babita said that Ritu and Sangeeta were waiting for their visas to take part in a training camp in Russia which was known to WFI, a claim which the federation outrightly rejected.

Babita also said that Geeta was in Bangalore training at a private facility and she has no knowledge why her sister hasn't joined the camp yet. "Geeta is in Bangalore. I thought she has joined the camp. I am also going to Bangalore for my rehab at the JSW facilities," she said.

Babita hoped the WFI would be lenient enough to let her take part in the Asian Games trials.

Geeta won a stunning gold in 2010 Commonwealth Games. Besides, she was also the first Indian woman wrestler to qualify for Olympics in 2012. Like her sister, Babita also clinched a gold medal in the 2014 Glasgow CWG and claimed a silver at last month's Gold Coast edition of the Games

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)


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