NEW DELHI: Wrestler Ritika Phogat cousin of Commonwealth Games gold medallists Geeta Phogat and Babita Phogat, has died, a tweet by one of the famous Phogat sisters confirmed on Thursday.
As per reports, the 17-year-old has allegedly died by suicide, the Haryana police said, adding that the wrestler may have undertaken the extreme step after losing a wrestling tournament final. She recently participated in a state-level competition at Bharatpur between March 12 and 14.
As quoted by Deputy Superintendent of Police, Charkhi Dadri in multiple reports, Ritika, the cousin of Babita Phogat, died allegedly by suicide on March 17. The police stated that the reason behind the incident may be her recent defeat in the wrestling tournament held in Rajasthan. However, investigations are going on.
Ritika, who is the maternal sister of Geeta and Babita Phogat, had trained under Dronacharya Awardee Mahavir Singh Phogat, who was also reportedly present at the tournament.
Geeta Phogat, who won India's first ever gold medal in wrestling at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and became the first Indian woman wrestler to qualify for the Olympics in 2012 wrote an emotional post on Twitter stating, "Winning and losing is a part of a player's life. We should not take any such step."
Meanwhile, another Phogat sister who is an MMA wrestler while writing an emotional post urged people to not spread and believe in any rumours and act responsibly. "These are tough times for me and my family and I urge you all to respect our privacy," she added.
Minister of State for Road, transport and Highways Vijay Kumar Singh while stressing on the need to train athletes to deal with pressure tweeted, "Terrible news that we lost #RitikaPhogat who had a brilliant career ahead. The world has changed from where it was some decades ago. Athletes are facing pressures which were not there earlier. An essential part of their training should be to deal with these pressures."
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