Teenage wrestler Ritika Phogat, the cousin sister of Geeta and Babita Phogat, allegedly committed suicide on Thursday (March 18). Ritikareportedly decided to take the extreme step after she failed to win the final of a wrestling tournament on Wednesday.
Ritika, 17, was playing the state-level sub-junior, junior women, and men wrestling tournament. It is learnt that Ritika lost the final on March 14 by just 1 point.
She hung herself to death after failing to bear the loss. Ritika had trained under Dronacharya Awardee Mahavir Singh Phogat. Ritika hailed from Jaitpur village in Rajasthan’s Jhunjhunu and she was undergoing training as a wrestler since 2015 at the Mahavir Phogat Sports Academy in Haryana.
Haryana's Charkhi Dadri District Superintendent of Police Ram Singh Bishnoi released a statement saying police is probing the case.
"Ritika, wrestler and cousin of Babita Phogat, died allegedly by suicide on March 17. The reason behind it might have been her defeat at a recent wrestling tournament in Rajasthan. Investigation underway," Ram Singh Bishnoi said.
Vijay Kumar Singh, Minister of State for Road Transport & Highways, said, "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."
Geeta and Babita Phogat shot to limelight after winning Gold and Silver medals respectively in the 2010 Commonwealth Games held in New Delhi. Geeta created history by becoming the first female wrestler from India to have won a gold medal in the CWG. In 2012, she also represented India at London Olympics.