Two weeks after testing positive for an anabolic steroid in an out-of-competition sample collection, Commonwealth Championships gold medallist Rupinder Singh now faces a life ban after failing in yet another dope test during the All India Police Games in Ranchi.
However, Rupinder is not alone this time. Two other gold medallists at the Police Games, Vijay More of Maharashtra Police and Amlok Singh of Punjab Police, have also tested positive during the Games held in January. National Anti Doping Agency (NADA) will now look into all three cases and if proved guilty, the lifters can face a ban from eight years to life.
The Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWF) vice-president Sahdev Yadav has confirmed the results and issued a warning to lifters across the country to either refrain from indulging in such practices or be ready to face the sternest of action.
The more worrisome fact is that despite the federation's much touted 'zero-tolerance' to doping, the menace continues unabated lending credence to rumours that authorities themselves are slack in controlling the problem.
And this after NADA had issued a warning to the government sector organisations in 2012 that "no seriousness is being shown by it to curb the dope menace".
dna in its February 7 edition had reported that Rupinder tested positive for a banned substance — Methandienone, an orally-effective anabolic steroid — by NADA for a sample that was collected during the first week of December 2013 from National Institute of Sports, Patiala.
Rupinder won the senior 105 kg snatch gold for India at the 2011 Commonwealth Championships in Cape Town. He also won silver in clean and jerk (184 kg).
Alarmed by the rising incidence of dope cheating cases amongst athletes from Railways, Police and Services, the IWF has now sought an explanation from Railway Sports Promotion (RSP) on why All India Inter-Railway Championship, Chennai, organisers failed to take dope samples during the course of the competition.
"We've asked RSP to explain why no samples were collected during the inter-Railways meet. We're awaiting their response and can only decide the future course of action after that," Yadav told dna on Monday.All three lifters will now be asked to return their gold medals for having tested positive for Methandienone.