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WFI President's post: Two-way contest between Sanjay Singh, Anita Sheoran

August 05, 2023 20:30 IST

IMAGE: In race for the top position, Sanjay Kumar Singh is a loyalist of outgoing WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. Photograph: ANI

Either Sanjay Kumar Singh or 2010 CWG champion Anita Sheoran will become the next WFI President as it has become a two-way contest for the top post following withdrawal of other candidates.

UP Association Vice President Sanjay is an outgoing WFI chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh loyalist while Anita is the lone woman in the fray for the August 12 polls.

Anita filed her nomination as representative of the Odisha unit even as she is from Haryana and employed with the state police.

Two other candidates in the fray for the top post, Dushyant Sharma (J&K) and another Brij Bhushan loyalist Jai Prakash (Delhi Wrestling Association President) withdrew their nominations on Saturday, according to source in the IOA ad-hoc committee.

The Returning Officer for the polls, former J&K High Court Judge Mahesh Mittal Kumar, will official announce the final list of candidates in the fray on August 7.

Elections will be held for the posts of president (1), senior vice-president (1), vice-president (4), secretary-general (1), treasurer (1), joint secretary (2) and executive members (5).


Olympian Jai Prakash, who had filed his nominations for three posts, has also pulled out of the race for the post of secretary-general, leaving it a straight contest between Chandigarh's Darshan Lal from the Brij Bhushan camp, and Railway Sports Control Board (RSPB) secretary Prem Chand Lochab.

The contest for the post of treasurer too will be a two-way contest between Uttarakhand's Satya Pal Singh Deshwal (Uttarakhand) -- from the Brij Bhushan camp -- and Dushyant Sharma.

A source close to the Brij Bhushan camp said on condition of anonymity that 16 candidates from the group will contest all 15 posts, and expressed confidence that it will "emerge victorious".

"We are contesting for all 15 posts and of the 18 candidates who filed nominations from our camp, only two have been withdrawn. They are Haryana's Rakesh Kumar for the post of executive member and Jai Prakash from the post of president and secretary-general. However, Prakash will contest for the post of vice-president," he said.

He also said the ID Nanavati will be the Brij Bhushan camp's candidate for the post of senior vice-president.

Another source said that the Brij Bhushan camp was also open to a rival camp being given one senior post in the new governing body.

"With the good of the wrestlers in mind, the outgoing president might consider RSPB secretary Lochab's name for the post of secretary-general and might consider withdrawing his own candidate. But that will be at a later date... probably on election day. But as of now, we are going to contest all 15 posts."

"The two camps were also trying to work out a compromise formula but the rival group wanted two posts -- senior vice-president (Devender Kadian, Assam) and secretary-general (Lochab) -- to which the Brij Bhushan camp didn't agree.

The IOA ad-hoc committee, being chaired by Wushu Association of India chief Bhupender Singh Bajwa is currently handling the day-to-day functions of WFI and will hand over charge to the newly-elected body on August 12, barring unforeseen circumstances.

National coaches not in Asian Games list 

National coaches Jagmander Singh (freestyle) and Greco-roman coach Hargobind Singh will not be accompanying the Indian wrestling contingent for the Hangzhou Asian Games from September 23.

The two veteran coaches' comments that their consent wasn't taken by the IOA ad-hoc committee while giving exemption from trials to Olympic medallist Bajrang Punia and Asian Games gold medallist Vinesh Phogat went against them.

The coaches accompanying the Indian team for the continental games are Sujeet Mann, Vinod, Kuldip Singh and Manoj Dhankar. Sudesh Malik and Ranbir Malik will be with the women's squad.

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