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Rediff.com  » Sports » IWF cracks whip on Indian drug cheats, bans Pujari for life

IWF cracks whip on Indian drug cheats, bans Pujari for life

January 21, 2010 16:36 IST

Repeat offenders Shailaja Pujari and Vicky Butta were slapped with life bans, while four others were barred for four years as the International Weightlifting Federation cracked the whip on Indian dope cheats.

Pujari, a 75kg gold medallist from the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games, had been earlier caught in the doping net in 2006 and had to be dropped from the Indian team.

This time, she flunked the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) tests conducted last September.

Batta, a 56kg silver winner in the 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games, had previously failed a drug test during the 2007 National Games.

"Both of them have been banned for life for failing dope tests last year," confirmed a source in the Weightlifting Federation of India (WFI).

The IWF has also imposed a fine of $5000 each on the duo.

Four other lifters, Harbhajan Singh (Delhi), Rajesh Singh (Madhya Pradesh), Sunita Rani (Punjab) and A Vijayadevi (Jharkhand), were banned for four years and fined $5,000 each.

India has been embarrassed repeatedly due to dope offenders in weightlifting and the federation had been banned in 2004 and 2006, penalised for three or more lifters testing positive within a calendar year.

The WFI officials had resigned en masse after six lifters tested positive for banned substances at the Pune national camp before the World Championships in China last year.

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