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IWF to move Asian junior meet out of India

October 27, 2009 16:05 IST

The negative publicity surrounding the series of dope flunks by lifters has forced the Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWF) to forfeit itself the right to host Asian Youth and Junior Championships in December, a top official of the federation said on Tuesday.

The Asian Youth and Junior Championships was scheduled to be held in Pune from December 16-24 but now the IWF has requested the Asian body to shift the event out of India.

IWF General Secretary Baldev Raj Gulati said the federation does not expect sponsorship as well as government support because of dope results and the Asian Weightlifting Federation has accepted its request to hold the event in another country.

"There has been a lot of negative publicity going around in the wake of dope results. We don't expect government support as well as help from small sponsors. Without them we can't hold the event. So we have told the Asian federation that we are not in a position to hold it. It has accepted our request," Gulati said.

Five lifters flunked out-of-competition dope tests conducted by World Anti-Doping Agency last month and if at least three 'B' samples returned positive, IWF faces the prospect of an international ban.

The Indian case is certain to be in the agenda of the Executive Meeting of the International Weightlifting Federation before the November 17-29 World Championships in Goyang city in Korea.

Gulati though is hoping for the best so that the country does not face the ignominy of not fielding any lifters in the Commonwealth Games here next October.

"We are hoping for the best when the international federation meets in Korea. The maximum penalty is four years but they may impose a hefty fine and a ban for a shorter period," he said.

Meanwhile, three of the five lifters who tested positive under WADA have informed that they would be going for the 'B' sample test. Two have yet to inform the federation though the deadline to do so ends on Tuesday.

"Three lifters have informed in writing that they want the 'B' sample test. The test will be conducted in the WADA-accredited laboratory in Cologne in Germany as under WADA rules the 'B' sample tests will also be conducted at the same laboratory where the 'A' sample tests were done," Gulati said.

Gulati also made it clear that none of the seven lifters were campers preparing for the 2010 Commonwealth Games.

"None of the seven are in the Commonwealth Games camps. A couple of them were selected in the last induction for the camps but they, including Shailaja Pujari, have not joined the camp," he said.

Shailaja and another dope offender Seepana Yamini were dropped from the country's squad for the Commonwealth Championships in Malaysia last week in which India won 27 medals including 17 gold.

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