05 February,2023 09:18 AM IST | New Delhi | PTI
Handed a 21-month ban for failing a dope test, India gymnastics ace Dipa Karmakar on Saturday said she accepted provisional suspension after returning positive for a banned drug to swiftly resolve her case with the international federation.
Karmakar, however, claimed that she "unknowingly ingested" the prohibited substance Higenamine - S3 Beta-2 Agonists as per WADA prohibited list - which was found in her dope sample. "...I unknowingly ingested and could not determine the source of [the banned substance]. I decided to take a provisional suspension with the hope of a swift resolution with the international federation," Karmakar tweeted, indicating that she had admitted to the doping rule violation.
Karmakar*s dope sample was collected out-of-competition by the International Testing Agency (ITA), an independent organisation that manages the anti-doping programme of the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG), on October 11, 2021. According to US Anti-Doping Agency, Higenamine is found in several herbs used for traditional medicine and is used in supplements without sometimes naming it.
It was added to the WADA prohibited list in 2017. The drug is prohibited at all times, both in and out-of-competition.
Her last FIG event was the 2019 World Cup in Baku. Her ban period will, however, end on July 10 this year as it was counted from the day (October 11, 2021) the sample was collected. Her results have been disqualified from October 11, 2021 onwards.
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Karmakar said mentally her doping case has been the "toughest" battle she has fought in her life. "I didn*t even know how it [the banned drug] entered my body and that for any sports person...it would have broken anybody. So it is not only hurtful but also the toughest mental battle that I have ever fought," the gymnast from Tripura told PTI.
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