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Six athletes suspended for doping
April 19, 2003 17:49 IST
Following the stunning disclosure that 22 athletes who participated in the 32nd National Games tested positive for use of performance enhancing drugs, the Amateur Athletic Federation of India on Saturday handed out bans and suspensions to some of them.
While six athletes have been handed bans, or suspended from the competition they participated in, a final decision on two cases will be in place after final procedures.
However, two athletes have been suspended from participating in any athletics meet at the local, national and international level till further notice, AAFI secretary Dr Lalit K Bhanot said in a statement. They are 400 metres hurdler Kalyani Alapati of Andhra Pradesh and Jagdish Basak of Punjab, who have been handed two-year bans from the day of the competition. Both tested positive for nandrolone.
Basak had emerged the fastest man at the National Games.
Ramandeep Singh, Sukhjinder Singh and Maha Singh (all from Punjab) and Andhra's Hirdayanand Singh have been handed a warning and disqualified from the competition they participated in.
While all the three Punjab athletes tested positive for mephentermine, the Andhra athlete was caught for using ephedrine.
The two athletes who have been suspended till further notice are last National Games's hosts Andhra Pradesh's Udaylaxmi and Kavita Pandya of Maharashtra. Both tested positive for anabolic steroids.
Meanwhile, Pampa Chanda of West Bengal, who tested positive for nandrolone during the Open National athletics championships at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium in Delhi, last September, has also been banned for two years from the day of the competition. The competition results of the National Games (athletics) and National Open athletics meet will be revised accordingly.
Being the first offence of some these athletes, only sanctions have been imposed on them, the AAFI said.
This is the second instance of a federation taking prompt action to tackle the growing menace of doping in Indian sports.
Earlier, the Rowing Federation of India had banned rower Laxman Singh for life after he tested positive for nandralone.
Laxman Singh had won a bronze medal in the single sculls event in Hyderabad last December.
Earlier this month, Indian Olympic Association secretary general Randhir Singh had said that of the 464 samples from the 32nd National Games sent to the Sports Authority of India lab, 22 athletes, including 13 medal winners had tested positive for dope.
However, to provide the athletes a fair chance, their 'B' samples will be sent to the sportspersons' preferred laboratory whether in India or abroad, Singh had said.
The IOA has asked the respective federations to inform it about the players with regard to their sample 'B' testing by April 21. The IOA's medical commission is scheduled to meet on April 23 to decide on the future course of action.
The All India Council of Sports (AICS) has also endorsed the view of putting in place a national agency to check doping.
AICS president Vijay Kumar Malhotra had told news persons after the body's second meeting on April 10 that he is hopeful that a law, if required, for setting up the National Anti-doping Agency will be passed in this session of parliament.
Otherwise, the government will be asked to pass an Ordinance, he said.