The National Under-23 Wrestling Championship, which got underway on September 17 in Amethi, Uttar Pradesh has encountered a serious problem. The three-day competition organised by the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) which features both Greco Roman and freestyle events has drawn flak as wrestlers were competing in slushy and muddy conditions; under-par preparations and amid garbage strewn everywhere at the venue.
According to the Indian Express report, hundreds of wrestlers from all over the country, who are participating in the championship, were competing on wrestling mats laid on under-construction platforms and the conditions were described as ‘filthy’ and ‘inhuman’ by a coach.
The publication also shared a video from the venue which shows the pathetic conditions under which the National U-23 championship are taking place. The short video clip shows wrestlers competing in a makeshift indoor facility that is filled with puddles of water, slush and garbage next to the mats.
The inhuman conditions drew a lot of flak as the report further cited one of the coaches stating that it was impossible to even ‘walk around the place’. “There are flies and mosquitoes everywhere, we are worried we’ll contract some disease,” the coach added.
Meanwhile, WFI’s assistant secretary Vinod Tomar admitted that the facilities are not up to mark but blamed it on the weather in Amethi. “The places to eat and sleep are okay but since it has been raining almost non-stop since Wednesday morning in Amethi,” Tomar said. He also added that due to the incessant rains most of the ‘facilities’ arranged in the competition area got disturbed. The assistant secretary further added that the facilities which is an ‘air-conditioned indoor hall’ would have been perfect had it not rained. “All our preparations got ruined because of the rain,” he concluded.
The National U-23 wrestling championships will conclude on September 19, 2021.