Former silver medallist in the Asian Games, boxer Sumit Sangwan has been banned with immediate effect for a year by the National Anti Doping Agency (NADA) after being tested positive for a banned substance.
"Sumit Sangwan banned for 1 year with immediate effect for consuming the specified prohibited substance," Navin Agarwal, NADA DG wrote on Twitter.
Sangwan's samples were collected in October during the Elite Men Boxing Championships. He was tested positive for acetazolamide, which is listed as diuretics and masking agents. In a series of tweets, the NADA confirmed the severity of the ban by stating, "Indian Boxer Sumit Sangwan had tested positive for the presence of Acetazolamide substance which comes under the category of 'Diuretics and Masking' agents. His sample was collected on 10th October 2019 while he was participating in the Elite Men Boxing Championship, 2019."
"Today the Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel has rendered him ineligible for a period of one year under Article 10.5.1. In the absence of any provisional suspension, his suspension ordered by the Panel shall commence from today, i.e. 26th December 2019."
On his part, the boxer refused that he voluntarily consumed the substance and stated that he had consulted an eye doctor with an infection. The prohibited substance was said to be in the medicines that were given by the doctor. However, this plea was rejected by the NADA.
"It is the personal duty of an athlete to ensure that no prohibited substance enters his/her body, therefore, his negligence is no ground for exonerating him from prescribed punishment," they stated on Twitter.
Sangwan was expected to turn out for India in the Tokyo Olympics 2020 after being named in the Olympic Qualifiers trials that will be held on December 29 and 30 in Karnataka. He will also have to forfeit his bronze medal that he won in the Olympic test event last October. The ban also effectively means that Sangwan's Olympic 2020 dreams are all but over.