India's quarter-miler Nirmala Sheoran has been banned by the National Anti-Doping Agency's (NADA) disciplinary panel for eight years after she returned positive for a banned substance in a test conducted last year.
Already served a doping ban in the past, Nirmala Sheoran returned to track last year during the National Inter-State Championships in June in Bhubaneswar. She had served a four-year ban for a dope offence in 2018.
In an order passed by the NADA's Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel on December 27 and revealed only on Thursday, Sheoran has been banned for eight years, starting from August 7, 2023.
She had tested positive for "Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AAS) and Testosterone (T)" according to the NADA website, which mentioned only her first name -- Nirmala.
Sheoran, the country's top quarter-miler at one time, had won women's 400m gold in the 2017 Asian Championships in Bhubaneswar. However, a doping offence committed in 2018 resulted in her stripping of that gold as her results from August 2018 to November 2018 were struck off.
She also ran in the 2016 Rio Olympics in 400m and women's 4x400m relay. She also finished fourth in the 400m race at the 2018 Jakarta Asian Games.
"Yes, the athlete in question is Nirmala Sheoran. She (Nirmala on the NADA website) is the same athlete (as Nirmala Sheoran). It's an out-of-competition test and her sample was taken in Jaipur," an athletics team source told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
The eight-year ban will also mean that Sheoran's career will be as good as over unless she gets a favourable decision on appeal if at all she takes that route.