Doping, in the world of sports, means the use of banned performance enhancing drugs by an athlete in order to improve his performance.
Here, we take a look at some of the high profile Indian athletes who have been embroiled in doping controversies during their career.
Kamalpreet Kaur [Discuss Throw]
Following a stellar sixth-placed finish at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Kamalpreet Kaur became one of the most talked about stars in Indian athletics. She even qualified for the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games, but things soon went down hill. Kaur was tested positive for stanozolol in a sample collected by the Athletics Integrity Unit. She was banned for three years and duly accepted the punishment.
Narsingh Pancham Yadav [Wrestling]
Narsingh Yadav's four-year doping ban just ahead of the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics remains one of India's biggest doping controversies. He failed two dope tests and accused a rival wrestler of sabotaging his Olympic dreams. Yadav was given a clean chit by the National Anti Doping Agency (NADA), but it was later challenged by the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA). He was eventually banned for 4 years by the world body just a day prior to his bout at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Prithvi Shaw [Cricket]
A high profile cricketer, Prithvi Shaw tested positive for terbutaline - a banned substance commonly found in cough syrups, in January 2019 during an in-competition test. He was handed a 8-month ban following this.
Renjith Maheshwary [Athletics]
A double Olympian and former Indian triple jump national record holder, Renjith Maheshwary was handed a three-month ban for doping in 2008 after his urine sample tested positive for ephedrine in a test conducted by the National Dope Test Laboratory (NDTL). However, both the World Athletics and WADA have maintained that they do not have any record of any wrong doing by Maheshwary since the NDTL did not have any accreditation when the test was conducted.
Seema Punia [Discus throw]
Seema Punia shot to fame with a World Youth Championships discus throw gold medal way back in 2000. But that joy was short lived as a positive dope test stripped her of the prestigious medal. She, however, bounced back with a bronze medal in the next edition of the global championships just two years later. Punia once again was caught in doping controversy just before the 2006 Asian Games, but was cleared of all charges by the AFI. She though still missed the continental event citing the bad health of her father.
Dipa Karmakar [Gymnastics]
Dipa Karmakar was handed a 21-month ban by the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) after having tested positive for higenamine in October 2021. Her ban remained under wraps for long before it was made public in February earlier this year. The gymnast from Tripura was earlier handed a 24-month ban but was reduced by three months after she accepted it. Her ban will cease to exist on 10th July 2023.
Shivpal Singh [Javelin Throw]
Javelin thrower Shivpal Singh was slapped with a four-year ban following a positive test in September 2021 - just a month after he competed at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. He was tested positive for methandienone - an anabolic steroid. His ban is expected to last until October 2025 which will force him out of the 2022 Asian Games as well as the 2024 Paris Olympics.
Satnam Singh [Basketball]
The first Indian to be drafted into NBA, Satnam Singh reportedly failed an out of competition dope test in 2019. He was subsequently handed a two-year ban for the use of Higenamine Beta-2-Agnoist.
Amit Panghal [Boxing]
One of the most celebrated Indian boxers of the current era, Amit Panghal tested positive for an anabolic steroid during his younger days. He was banned for two years, but successfully appealed to get it reduced to a year because he was just a first-time offender. He has since gone on to win medals at the Asian Games, Commonwealth Games, and World Championships.