CHENNAI: It’s not the first time that SAI is in controversy. Murder, suicide and rape attempts, the elite sports institution has been in the eye of a storm several times.
Most notorious was the murder of Satinder Kumar, who represented India at the Asian Judo Championship, on April 3, 2006. The 19-year-old national champion was found with his head shattered in his hostel room in Hisar, Haryana.
Police arrested four judokas and the chargesheet mentioned professional rivalry as the reason for murder. Four years later, a court awarded life imprisonment for Dharmender and Vinod. Two others were acquitted.
The death of international boxer Sonu Chahal in Bhiwani on March 13, 2006, created sensation. He was found hanging in his room and parents alleged it was murder. They accused coach Jagdish Singh and a couple of other boxers.
Police registered a case of murder. Sonu’s father alleged boxer Narender Sangwan got admission by forging documents. After his son came to know this, he was murdered. The case was taken up by CBI and five years later, they ended the investigation confirming it was a case of suicide resulting from Sonu’s failed relationship with a female boxer in the centre.
Narender, Pawan Rathi (boxers), coach Jagdish and Balwan Singh, watchman of the hostel, were cleared by the investigating agency.
Several SAI coaches have been arraigned for sexual assault on their wards. In August 2012, a case was filed against weightlifting coach Y K Singh of Uttarakhand after one of his female wards complained of a rape attempt. In August 2014, K B Singh, coach in Kandivali, was arrested for molesting his ward. In the same year, coach Okram Chaoba, attached with the centre in Takyelpat, Imphal, was suspended after five of his trainees complained of sexual assault.