On a day when Olympic medallist Vijender Singh went underground to avoid giving blood and urine samples in a drug haul case, the National Anti Doping Agency (NADA) on Tuesday refused to test the star boxer, despite a request from the Sports Ministry.
A red-faced Ministry of Sports, meanwhile, said it would wait for a written response from the NADA before taking any action. The autonomous agency had cited World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) protocol as reason for refusing to test Vijender for heroin. However, the agency said it was willing to conduct an out-of-competition dope test.
“We have not asked NADA to proclaim anything on his guilt but just conduct a test to find out whether he took heroin, the NADA has not conveyed anything to us in writing, let them do that first and then we will think of our stand,” Sports Secretary P K Deb told reporters. On his part, NADA director general Mukul Chaterjee said, “We will not be testing Vijender for heroin. We will strictly go by the NADA and WADA code. We are independent and will strictly follow the protocol for out-of-competition testing of an athlete irrespective of what the Sports Ministry has said. There is no time frame in the letter received; we will undertake the test when NADA finds it appropriate.”