Olympic-medallist Sushil Kumar was today booked by the Delhi Police in connection with his supporters clashing with those of rival wrestler Parveen Rana at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium here, police said. Kumar and his supporters have booked under IPC section 341 (wrongful restraint) and 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), the latter attracting an imprisonment of up to one year or a monetary fine of Rs 1,000 or both, police officials said. The supporters of the two wrestlers yesterday engaged in an ugly clash and came to blows during the selection trial for the Gold Coast Games, to be held in April next year. Kumar had won all his bouts but things took an ugly turn when Rana, after losing to the former in the semifinal clash, claimed that the decorated wrestler’s supporters beat him and his elder brother “for daring to take the ring” against him. This triggered a clash between the followers of the two which was even captured on cameras, leading to the police today registering a case against Kumar and his supporters, senior police officials said. Deputy Commissioner of Police (Central) Mandeep Singh Randhawa confirmed that an FIR has been lodged but the reason behind the brawl was being probed. He said the police have not received any complaint against Rana or his followers from Kumar or his camp.
Kumar had yesterday claimed that he was bitten by Rana during the bout. “… he bit me but no problem, it might be his tactics to stop me from performing well. All this is a part of sports,” Sushil had told reporters after the bouts. “Whatever happened here was wrong. I condemn it. There was mutual respect after the fight ended,” he added. Incidentally, the 34-year-old Kumar had beaten Rana in the Commonwealth Championships final in South Africa a few weeks back.
Also, Rana was among the three wrestlers who gave a walkover to Kumar in the National Championships last month owing to the “respect” they had for the veteran. Rana yesterday alleged that Kumar’s supporters gave death threats to him and dared him to participate in the upcoming Pro Wrestling League.