The Ayodhya administration has denied permission to Bharatiya Janata Party MP and Wrestling Federation of India chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who has been accused of sexual harassment, to hold a rally in Ayodhya on June 5, an official said on Friday.
Singh, however, said he postponed the 'Jan Chetna Maharally' at the Ram Katha Park for "a few days" due to the ongoing police probe into the wrestlers' allegations against him.
Circle Officer (Ayodhya) SP Gautam said in view of the events scheduled on the World Environment Day on June 5, a request by BJP councillor Chamela Devi on behalf of Singh seeking permission for the rally was turned down.
In a Facebook post, Singh said, "My dear well wishers! With your support, I have served as a member of the Lok Sabha for the last 28 years. I have tried to unite people of all castes, communities and religions, while being in the ruling party or in opposition. It is for these reasons that my political opponents and their parties have levelled false allegations against me."
"In the present situation, some political parties are trying to disturb the social harmony by promoting provincialism, regionalism and caste conflict by holding rallies at various places," Singh said.
Explaining the reasons for holding the seers' meet, the BJP MP said, "It was decided to organise a 'Sant Sammelan' at Ayodhya on June 5 to deliberate on the evil spreading in the entire society. But now that the police are investigating the allegations (levelled by wrestlers) and respecting the directions of the Supreme Court, the 'Jan Chetna Maharally' on June 5, and 'Ayodhya Chalo' programme have been postponed for a few days."
"My well-wishers from all religions, castes and regions have supported me on this issue. So, I express my gratitude to everyone and assure that I and my family will always be indebted to you," Singh said.
Prominent wrestlers, including Vinesh Phogat, Bajrang Punia and Sakshi Malik, have been holding protests since April 23 accusing Singh of sexual exploitation.
Singh is the BJP MP from Kaiserganj in Uttar Pradesh.
On May 4, the Supreme Court had closed the proceedings on a petition by women wrestlers accusing the WFI chief of sexual harassment, noting FIRs have been filed against him and seven complainants provided adequate security.
A bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud refused to entertain an oral plea by the counsel representing the wrestlers that the ongoing probe against Singh be monitored by a retired judge of the apex court or high court.
The apex court, however, granted liberty to the wrestlers to approach the Delhi high court or the jurisdictional magistrate for further relief.
The bench, also comprising Justices P S Narasimha and J B Pardiwala, observed that the plea filed before it was for the registration of an FIR and that purpose has been fulfilled.
"Having due regard to the ambit of the proceedings which were instituted before this court and following the registration of FIR, we close the proceedings at this stage," the bench said while hearing a plea filed by three women wrestlers who had sought registration of FIR in the matter.
Meanwhile, the Samyukt Kisan Morcha on Thursday said in its Muzaffarnagar meeting that it has sent a memorandum to President Droupadi Murmu seeking issuing of directions to allow women wrestlers to continue their protest at the Jantar Mantar in New Delhi.
In a statement, the SKM, an umbrella body of several farmer organisations, also said that it has reiterated its demand for the arrest and speedy legal proceedings against Singh.