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IOA will be harsh on drug users
Onkar Singh in Delhi | April 23, 2003 19:03 IST
Indian Olympic Association secretary general Randhir Singh declared on Wednesday that the apex body for sports in the country will spare no effort in making Indian sport drug-free.
Speaking to rediff.com at the Nehru stadium in New Delhi, Randhir Singh clarified that the IOA is not interfering in any manner with the investigations being carried out by the IOA's Medical Commission and Anti Doping Commission, headed by Dr Manmohan Singh, which had been entrusted the task of probing the cases of 22 athletes who had been found guilty of using performance-enhancing drugs at last December's National Games in Hyderabad.
"Let me make it clear that nobody is going to shirk responsibility in this matter. We are taking this matter very seriously. We are ensuring that the entire procedure is followed as per rules. That is why it has been decided to give the athletes one week's time to present themselves before the medical commission and put up their cases," he said.
He said in case the concerned athlete names any of the coaches or doctors, or any other individual connected with sports, the IOA would ask the athletes to furnish proof of their innocence and also ask the concerned officials named by the athletes to make their position clear.
"If any one is named we are going to seek an explanation from them," he added.
He denied that athletes are using drugs to enhance their performance because of the cash incentives.
"These incentives have been there even before. I do not think that could be the case for drug abuse. I congratulate the medical commission for doing a fine job in this matter," Randhir said.
"So many cases have come to light because of the rigid procedures followed by the medical commission."
He said a decision regarding the withdrawal of medals would be taken only after the medical commission gives its final report.