New Delhi: In what could be termed as one of the biggest doping scandals in recent years, as many as 21 weightlifters have been provisionally suspended by the Indian Weightlifting Federation after testing positive for banned substances.
The lifters tested positive across different championships — both out-of-competition and in-competition. But the maximum numbers of offenders were caught at the National Youth and Junior Weightlifting Championships, which was held in Yamunanagar in January.
“Yes, 21 lifters have tested positive and have been provisionally suspended, pending the result of their 'B' sample tests. Their 'B' sample tests are awaited,” Indian Weightlifting Federation secretary general Sahdev Yadav said.
“This can be called one of the biggest catches in recent times but one has to take into consideration that it includes competitions at Universities, Police Games, Railways, etc also,” he added.
'B' sample tests awaited
In case their 'B' sample tests also comes out to be positive, the first-time offenders face the prospect of being banned for four years.
The National Anti-Doping Agency has increased the ban period of first time dope offenders to maximum of four years from two, effective from January 1, 2015.