Brij Bhushan Singh pleads not guilty to charges of sexual harassment

The ex-WFI chief is also charged of with intimidation and outraging the modesty of women, to all of which he pleaded 'not guilty' and claimed a trial

Former WFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh at the Rouse Avenue Court in New Delhi (photo: PTI)
Former WFI president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh at the Rouse Avenue Court in New Delhi (photo: PTI)


A Delhi court on Tuesday, 21 May, framed charges of sexual harassment, intimidation and outraging the modesty of women against ex-chief of the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) and six-time Lok Sabha MP Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, in a criminal case filed by female wrestlers he worked with.

Singh pleaded not guilty to the charges and claimed the right to trial.

"Why will I plead guilty when I am not guilty?" Singh said to additional chief metropolitan magistrate (ACMM) Priyanka Rajpoot.

The court also framed the charge of criminal intimidation against co-accused and former WFI assistant secretary Vinod Tomar in the case.

The judge posted the matter for further proceedings on 1 June.

ACMM Rajpoot observed there was "sufficient evidence" to proceed against him.

The court framed the charges against Singh under IPC sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 354A (sexual harassment) and 506 (criminal intimidation).

"There is sufficient evidence to frame charges against the accused," the judge said.

The court, however, discharged Singh in a complaint filed by one of the six women wrestlers, citing lack of sufficient evidence to back her claim.

Singh, an influential Rajput leader from Uttar Pradesh, has been denied a BJP ticket from the Kaiserganj Lok Sabha seat in the wake of the sexual harassment allegations levelled against him. Instead, the BJP has fielded his son Karan Bhushan Singh in Kaiserganj, his stronghold.

The Delhi Police had filed a charge sheet in the case against Singh on June 15 under sections 354, 354A, 354D (stalking) and 506 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Another Delhi court is likely to pronounce its order in July on whether to accept a police report seeking cancellation of a sexual harassment complaint filed by a minor wrestler against Singh.

During the in-chamber proceedings held on 1 August 2023, the minor wrestler had told the court that she was satisfied with the Delhi Police's investigation in the case and was not opposed to the closure report it had submitted.

On 15 June 2023, the Delhi Police filed a report before the court, seeking cancellation of the case involving after the girl's father made a startling 'confession' midway through the probe that he had levelled false allegations of sexual harassment against Singh to get back at him for some other perceived injustice to his daughter.

The police had recommended dropping the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act case against Singh, but charged him with sexual harassment and stalking in a separate case lodged on the basis of a complaint by six women wrestlers.

Police had recommended cancellation of the complaint involving the minor wrestler, saying "no corroborative evidence" was found.

The POCSO Act provides for a minimum imprisonment of three years, depending on the sections under which a crime has been registered. The closure report notwithstanding, the court has to take a call on whether to accept it or order further investigation.

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