Athletes camping abroad bring back performance-enhancing drugs for distribution: Anju tells AFI general assembly | More sports news



CHANDIGARH: Legendary long jumper and Athletics Federation of India (AFI) senior vice-president Anju Bobby George dropped a bombshell on Sunday alleging that few athletes in the country are bringing performance-enhancing drugs from abroad , which are distributed to some of their colleagues. .
Speaking at the AFI’s two-day Annual General Meeting (AGM) here, Anju, the country’s only world championship medalist, said many of the banned drugs taken had been brought in by athletes caught for doping from abroad.
“Many banned drugs taken by the athletes arrested for doping are not available in India, they come from abroad,” Anju, also a renowned coach, reportedly told the general assembly.
“It’s not just coaches who provide banned drugs to young athletes, but many athletes who travel abroad to train, obtain the (performance-enhancing) drugs and distribute them to other athletes. We we also have to stop that,” said Anju, who won a long bronze medal in the vault at the Paris 2003 World Championships.
AFI President Adille Sumariwalla, for his part, warned athletes that they would be subjected to more intense doping tests than before by the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) and urged them to stop taking drugs. drugs and claim their innocence later. .
Sumariwalla said NADA has boosted its doping testing capabilities by hiring more staff to crack down on drug cheaters.
“I had recently met with people from NADA and they are going to test more samples. They have recruited 115 doping control officers and they are going to meet at the district and state level in addition to events at the national level” , Sumariwalla said while emphasizing zero tolerance on doping. from the AFI.
“We have urged NADA to do doping tests at junior competitions, district, state and department level competitions as well. I say to the athletes, you will get caught one day and stop this ‘dhanda’ ( company).”
Sumariwalla said most doping incidents occur at lower levels and outside the national camp, and that government-paid coaches were responsible for intentionally giving banned drugs to young athletes.
“These coaches are transferred every three months. If they have produced a medal-winning athlete by giving the young athlete prohibited drugs, their transfer can be stopped.
“Everyone (addicts) will say they didn’t know they had taken banned substances and they were innocent, but I can tell you that 99% of those who are caught doping know what they are doing. were doing.
“India is number three in the doping list (highest number of doping offenders). We can be banned like Russia.”
Indian athletics reached a new high last year after star javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra won the first Olympic gold medal in athletics – the second individual gold medal in any sport.
But the doping failure of top discus thrower Kamalpreet Kaur and fellow javelin thrower Shivpal Singh has once again brought the threat of doping in athletics to the fore.
“Some athletes are provisionally suspended and some are not and they have challenged their (suspensions). Until their challenges are completed (not decided by the relevant courts) we will not be able to provide any updates,” Sumariwalla said. when asked. on recent doping cases.
Sumariwalla said the AFI could not have done more than it did to combat the threat of doping.
“It was me who wanted the criminalization of doping, prison sentences for drug addicts. We were one of the first DSFs, who had a needle-free policy, what more could we have done? We didn’t not the powers of the police,” he told a press conference after the AGM.
“The anti-doping bill (presented recently in Parliament) has not made doping a criminal offence, but I hope it will be in stage 2,” he said without giving further details.
The AFI also approved the annual calendar, ratified national records, made a decision on mandatory online athlete registration for various events to end “identity theft” and digitize all of its records.
He also decided to intensify the work of producing more qualified Indian coaches.


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