India's campaign at the ongoing Asian Athletics Championships in Bhubaneswar has been hit by a doping scandal with leading decathlete Jagtar Singh testing positive for a banned substance.
Jagtar's urine sample 'A', collected during the Federation Cup National Championships in Patiala last month by the NADA, has returned positive for meldonium and he has been put under provisional suspension.
The Rajasthan athlete now faces the prospect of being banned for a maximum period of four years for a first-time dope offence if his confirmatory 'B' sample test also returns positive.
Jagtar was a part of the 95-member Indian team for the ongoing Asian Championships and he was named along with Abhishek Shetty.
Only Shetty took part in the 10-event decathlon which began on Thursday, the opening day. In fact, he was left out of team and did not come here after the Athletics Federation of India was informed about it by the National Anti-Doping Agency four days ago.
"We knew about Jagtar's dope failure three-four days before the championships and we have left him out. He did not come along with the Indian team in Bhubaneswar," an official of the Indian team told PTI.
In the Federation Cup, Jagtar won the decathlon event with 6888 points while Shetty was second with 6814 points.
Image: Anti-doping control kits are pictured at an anti-doping control centre.
Photograph: Lee Jae-Won/Reuters