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103 Players Tested Positive This Year: Sports Ministry

 New Delhi: Admitting that the menace of doping was rampant in the country, the Sports Ministry on Saturday disclosed that 103 Indian sports-persons, including juniors have flunked dope test in the last eight months.  Recently,
PTI September 11, 2010 17:14 IST
PTI

 New Delhi: Admitting that the menace of doping was rampant in the country, the Sports Ministry on Saturday disclosed that 103 Indian sports-persons, including juniors have flunked dope test in the last eight months.

 Recently, 18 players, including Commonwealth Games squad members, had failed the dope test with 12 of them testing positive for the same substance -- Methylhexanamine.

Talking to reporters, Rahul Bhatnagar, joint Secretary (International Sports Division), of Sports Ministry said not only CWG disciplines but players from other sport are also in the list.

"Overall, 2047 samples were collected from January to August and 103 of them turned out to be positive. We have informed WADA about this," Bhatnagar, who is also Director General of the National Anti Doping Agency, said.

On being asked how most of the players are testing positive for Methylhexamanine recently, Bhatnagar said that is not the case.

"Out of 103, only 12 have tested positive for Methylhexamanine. In others stallonzone, nandrolone and diuretics were found. Methylhexamanine is a recent phenomenon, it is not clear if they all were taking the same thing," he said.

Bhatnagar also shot down the excuse of players such as weightlifter Sanamacha Chanu that they consumed supplements recommended by the coaches.

"WADA rules are clear that if something is found from the body of an athlete, he/she is responsible for that. Ultimately they are responsible for what they are eating.

"There is a WADA campaign to root out the menace which is rampant. We have to finsh it. It's difficult to tell what's inside a supplement. The athletes are given lectures at seminars what they can take and what not," Bhatnagar said.

"We can't say they took it deliberately or give to them by someone else."

He also said the blood testing has also started at NADA's WADA-accredited lab.

"We have also started taking blood samples for testing. Recently samples were taken from Kabaddi players after a tournament in Punjab," he said.

On being asked about sub-standard supplements provided by Sports Authority of India during training camps, he said," Food supplements are an integral part of our scheme. It helps in development of players. SAI has an expert committee and it has come out with a list of supplements which can be taken safely. A due diligence has been taken in preparing that list." PTI