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‘I am alive’: Indian champion wrestler wrongly declared dead

A young Indian wrestling champion has assured the world that she is alive and well after a case of mistaken identity saw national media declare her the victim of a murder. 

Nisha Dahiya, who just days ago won bronze at the Under-23 world championships in Belgrade, spent Wednesday training for an upcoming national competition.

But by evening she was shocked to learn that several news outlets had declared her dead, after the murder of a trainee wrestler with the same name at a training institute in the northern state of Haryana.

The victim’s brother was also killed, local media reported.

Several outlets had declared the victim’s namesake dead before she posted a video on Instagram to announce that she was “absolutely fine”. 

“Obviously everybody is happy to realise that I am alive. I am preparing for the tournament now,” the former Under-23 national champion told Press Trust of India. 

Haryana has been a traditional powerhouse for India’s top-flight wrestlers — particularly women athletes — but the sport has been plagued by several instances of violence off the mat. 

Sushil Kumar, a two-time Olympic medallist from the state, was jailed on charges of kidnapping and murder in May over the death of a young wrestler at a stadium in Delhi. 

Another Haryana coach was arrested in February for allegedly shooting dead five people after he was accused of harassment. 

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