Chandigarh: Wrestler Ritika Phogat (17), a cousin of the Phogat sisters, allegedly committed suicide in Haryana’s Charkhi Dadri district after she lost the final bout of a tournament, police said on Thursday.
Ritika took the extreme step on the night of March 15, they said.
A native of Rajasthan’s Jaipur village, Ritika was staying with her uncle and Dronacharya awardee Mahavir Singh Phogat in Charkhi Dadri’s Balali village under Jhojhu Kalan police station for the past four years, said Station House Officer (SHO) Dilbagh Singh.
She hanged herself from a ceiling fan at her uncle’s house on the night of March 15 as she was upset over losing to her rival by one point in the final bout of a championship, he said.
The championship was held in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur from March 12 to 14.
Ritika was learning and practising wrestling at the Mahavir Phogat Sports Academy in Charkhi Dadri.
Wrestling star Geeta Phogat described Ritika, her maternal sister, as a “talented wrestler”.
“It’s a very sad moment for my family. Ritika was a talented wrestler and I don’t know why she took such a step. Victory and defeat are a part of an athlete’s life. We should never take such a step,” she said in a tweet in Hindi.
Former Union minister Vijay Kumar Singh also took to Twitter to condole Ritika’s death.
“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,” he said.