Two horses of the Indian equestrian team, getting ready to compete in the forthcoming Asian Games, have been removed from the quarantine zone in the training base in Bangalore, as one of them tested positive for a prohibited substance, diclofenac, and the other for ‘tick' fever.

Confirming the fact, experts associated with the sport said that the fever was caused by mosquito bite, and the dope was a ‘simple pain-killer'.

It may be noted that the Indian equestrian authorities had convinced the Chinese organisers to allow the quarantine to be done in India itself, rather than in the stipulated countries like Germany or Malaysia, before the horses were sent to China for competition.

The Chinese veterinary experts had in fact visited Bangalore to possibly satisfy themselves about the quality of the quarantine arrangements, and have reportedly visited the camp once again.

Long delay

While it is mentioned that the tests were conducted around ‘June-July' the equestrian fraternity has been left wondering as to why the results were delayed for months.

The elimination of the horses also meant the non-selection of leading riders like Rajesh Pattu who has bronze medals from three Asian Games, and Sunil Kumar.

The two had done well in a series of selection trials spread over a long period and had ranked among the top three in eventing (three-day event).

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