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National Games

National Games Doping Row: Three athletes receive one-year reduced ban

Out of 25 athletes caught in doping mud at the 37th National Games, three athletes received a reduced ban for accepting offence.


Representative Photograph


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 17 Jan 2024 3:01 AM GMT

Three athletes who took part in the 37th National Games were among the 11 sportspersons who got reduced ban for failed dope tests after admitting their offence within 20 days, the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) has revealed.

The athletes avoided the mandated four-year ban due to early acceptance of the guilt earlier this month. Their names appeared in the latest NADA list of those who were handed reduced sanctions of three years under Article 10.8 of the NADA Rules.

Kamaljeet Kaur (100m and 200m), Ajay Kumar (5000m and 10000m), and Harjodhvir Singh (5000m and 10000m) are the three track-and-field athletes, who failed dope tests in the 37th National Games in Goa.

Article 10.8.1 of the NADA Anti-Doping Rules allows athletes charged with a four-year ban to benefit from a one-year reduction if they admit the violation and accept the penalty within 20 days of being charged.

Article 10.8.2 provides an opportunity for the athlete to enter into a Case Resolution Agreement with the NADA and WADA in which the applicable period of ineligibility can be agreed upon based on the facts of the case.

More than 20 athletes from various sports returned positive for banned drugs in tests conducted during the Games.

Ajay Kumar won the men's 5000m bronze and finished sixth in 10,000m but tested positive for Darbepoetin and Morphine. He presented Goa at the event.

Harjodhvir from Punjab tested positive for the same as Ajay but he didn't win any medal and his best finish was fifth in the men's 5000m.

Another athlete from Punjab, Kamaljeet won silver in the women's 200m and finished sixth in 100m but was tested positive for Drostanolone as per NADA.

The three athletes will begin their ban period on December 6, 2023, the date of their provisional suspension.

Three weightlifters -- Priyadarshani Thuram (Mephentermine), Mithlesh Sonkar (SARM LGD-4033), and a minor (Methyltestosterone) -- were also among the 11 sportspersons handed a reduced ban of three years.

The most prominent of the seven weightlifters who failed dope tests at the National Games was Vandana Gupta, a double bronze medal winner in the Commonwealth Championships.

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