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Swapna Barman issues 'unconditional apology' after 'transgender' controversy

On October 2, on the final day of the heptathlon event, Swapna made an explosive allegation, alleging that her compatriot Nandini is transgender, and she should be stripped of her bronze medal.

Swapna Barman issues unconditional apology after transgender controversy

Swapna Barman created a new National Games record in Women's Long Jump. 


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 5 Oct 2023 1:16 PM GMT

Indian heptathlete Swapna Barman issued an 'unconditional apology' after accusing Nandini Agasara of being a ' transgender'.

Swapna, who won the gold medal in the 2018 Asian Games, failed to defend her title in Hangzhou as she finished fourth, with Nandini pipping her for the bronze medal with 5712 points, two more than Swapna's.

"I wish to tender my unconditional apology for my tweet the other day, especially to my co-athlete was the sheer disappointment and momentous emotional outburst that made me react in this manner against the ethos of sports, and deeply feel sorry to everyone for my emotional reaction," Swapna wrote on X, formerly Twitter, on Thursday.

On October 2, Monday, on the final day of the heptathlon - an eight-sport event - Swapna made the explosive allegation, saying that Nandini should be stripped of her medal as she is transgender.

"I have lost my Asian Games bronze medal to transgender women at the 19th Asian Games held in Hangzhou, China. I want my medal back as it is against the rules of our athletics. Help me and support me, please. #protestforfairplay," Swapna had posted on X, formerly Twitter, before deleting it on October 2.

Nadini Agasara won the Asian Games bronze medal.

In an interview with The Bridge, she said, "If I do not get this medal which I deserved I shall expose everyone. Everyone can see the injustice that I am being subjected to."

"Transgender athletes, who have testosterone levels above 2.5, cannot compete in events over 200 metres. No girl can come up in a heptathlon so fast. I have trained for 13 years in this, it is impossible that she trains for four months and gets to this level," Swapna added.

Swapna withdrew her allegation after Nandini furiously asserted her woman identity and said she would take the issue up with the Athletics Federation of India (AFI).

"I know what I am. Ask her to show proof. I will also show that I have won the medal for India. I only want to do well for the country. Now I have won, so people have started talking about it. I will take up this issue with AFI for sure. I wanted to enjoy the moment of winning the medal but going back to India as my mother is not well," Nandini had said.

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