Sports Minister Vijay Goel on Wednesday threw his weight behind beleaguered athlete Dutee Chand, saying they stand with the sprinter and will strongly pursue her case.
Dutee will return to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne later this month to continue her fight against hyperandrogenism regulations of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).
Dutee and her lawyers will square up against the IAAF after the world athletics body announced on Tuesday that it would appeal with fresh evidence against CAS' interim decision of 2015 to suspend its regulations.
"I have read reports in the papers today and as far as the athlete Dutee Chand is concerned, I am very clear that we are standing with our athlete, and will pursue it strongly," Goel said.
The minister was speaking after an inspection of the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi, one of the venues for the FIFA Under-17 World Cup, to be held from October 6 to 28.
After the CAS partially upheld her appeal in an interim order two years back, Dutee Chand was allowed to "continue to compete" till a final decision was given by the CAS on her appeal against IAAF's hyperandrogenism policy.
Goel, meanwhile, said a decision will be taken on the Prime Minister Narendra Modi's task force for the 2020 Olympic Games in a week's time.
"We have received an interim report from the Prime Minister's task force and the final report will be submitted in one month as we have give them an extension. This interim report is regarding the 2020 Olympics and the ministry is studying it and will take a decision in a week's time," Goel said.
India's lone Olympic gold-medallist Abhinav Bindra and national badminton coach Pullela Gopichand are part of the eight-member task force of the sports ministry, which was constituted to draw up an action plan for the next three Games.
Image: Dutee Chand