Express News Service
CHENNAI: Glasgow and Gold Coast Commonwealth Games gold medallist K Sanjita Chanu is among top sportspersons who have failed a dope test and has been provisionally suspended. The National Anti-Doping Agency has updated the list of provisionally suspended athletes since January 2022 and has added more than 20 new names. Sanjita Chanu, who finished second at the recently held National Games in 49kg, tested positive for the presence of Drostanolone Metabolite, an anabolic androgenic steroid.
Sanjita had won gold in 48kg ahead of Mirabai Chanu at Glasgow while in Gold Coast her gold was in 53kg. She won silver behind Mirabai in 49kg at the National Games in Gujarat last year. Sanjita had failed a dope test in 2018 for testosterone but was cleared of charges in 2020 because of "certain non-conformities". She also has multiple golds in Commonwealth Championships.
"It's very sad that such a top player has tested positive. This will have a very bad influence on the youngsters," Sahdev Yadav, president of Indian Weightlifting Federation, told this daily. He has been quite critical after the senior nationals and had been saying that strict action should be taken on all those caught for doping. There are at least three more lifters -- Veerjeet Kaur, Poorani Sri and Ashish on the list.
If Sanjita's name is shocking, sprinter S Dhanalakshmi's name seems intriguing. She had tested positive during an out-of-competition conducted by the Athletics Integrity Unit, World Athletics' anti-doping arm, in Antalya on May 1 last year. She was informed about the adverse analytical finding and of her provisional suspension on July 11 last year.
Interestingly, if an anti-doping violation is done within a few weeks of each other one such sanction stands. The AIU had slapped a one-year reduced sentence of three years on steroid violation for admission and acceptance of consequences. Her ban too will commence from the date of provisional suspension. She had competed at the inter-state senior nationals in Chennai in June and finished first ahead of Hima Das and Aishwarya Mishra in 200m. It needs to be seen if her sample was collected during the meet or whether it was in some other meet.
Since the date and where the samples were collected is not known, it is possible the NADA is following certain procedures. Other athletes who have tested positive are sprinter Diandra Valladares and hurdler Gudiya who too had participated at the Chennai nationals. Diandra, from Maharashtra, won a bronze in 100m at the National Games held in Gujarat last year.There are quite a few wrestlers too and most of them tested positive for steroids. Deepanshu, Ravi, Ravi Raj Dhamaraj Chavan, Mahesh KP, Sandeep have tested for steroids. Since their weight categories are not given, it is difficult to trace whether they are meallists in nationals.
There are three kabaddi players Shivam Chaudhary, Rajnesh and Mohit Pahal. Chaudhury has featured in pro kabaddi league as well. Judoka Navroop Kaur is also provisionally suspended for testing positive for steroid (Metenolone). There is a case of evasion by an athlete as well. The anti-doping disciplinary panel will decide on the fate of the athletes after a hearing. In the case of steroids, a four-year ban is usually imposed for a first time offence. While two years for stimulants