The Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWLF) has suspended the Railways Sports Promotion Board (RSPB) and the Maharashtra State Weightlifting Association (MSWA) for one year each after lifters belonging to these units tested positive for prohibited substances.
Eight RSPB lifters tested positive during the inter-Railways championship in Kolkata from December 1 to 3 last, while three MSWA lifters returned ‘positive' results in the National youth and junior championships at Jagadhri, Haryana, from January 2 to 9.
RSPB will remain suspended till December 3, while MSWA will face the punishment till January 7 next year.
According to IWLF Secretary General Sahdev Yadav, apart from the suspension, each unit has to pay a fine of Rs 50,000. Besides, they would be required to deposit additional fine of Rs 50,000 for each athlete who had failed the dope test.
Of the eight Railways lifters, ‘B' samples of six had been confirmed as positive. Two of the three Maharashtra lifters have also tested positive for their ‘B' samples. Others' ‘B' sample results were awaited.
So far, the athletes to have tested positive for both their samples are Ashim Biswas, K. Gnanasekaran. K. Arumugam, Ranbir Singh, Atul Kumar and Darshan Chaudhary of RSPB and Ganesh Mali and Diganti Gadave of MSWA.
The IWLF has also taken disciplinary action against two coaches, Pravin Vyahare and S. Chendu of Maharashtra. They have been suspended for two years.
“Three more lifters from another state association have tested positive. We are waiting for their ‘B' sample results,” Yadav said.
Yadav said the IWLF would continue its effort to thwart doping activities. “We will conduct dope tests in the forthcoming National Games as well as the National championship (in Bangalore from March 23-27),” he said.
The dope testing at the National Games is to be conducted by the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) which has been entrusted with the responsibility by the Indian Olympic Association (IOA). The NADA will also be responsible for ‘results management'.