Firm action required to curb doping in Indian athletics

Updated: Mar 19, 2013, 11:32 AM IST

London: A leading Indian sports lawyer has said that more action was needed to be taken to stop doping in Indian athletics and has called for a national debate on the issue.

India has 52 athletes on the International Association of Athletics Federation`s banned list (external), which is the highest number of athletes on the list as compared to Russia`s 32, 10 from the United States and four from Great Britain.

According to Lovely Dasgupta, there should be a national debate on the issue, adding that India is not like other countries, where a commission can be set up instantly to look into an issue, like that of sprinter Ben Johnson`s doping issue in Canada.

Dasgupta further said that coaches put pressure on athletes, who often take banned substances unknowingly, adding that the athletes face danger of losing their places in the teams if they do not listen to their coaches.

Dasgupta also said that for such athletes, getting selected for a team is very important so that they can get a government job, which becomes available if they get exposure at the state and the national level.

According to Dasgupta, a government job is the only incentive for many Indian athletes to compete in their sport, adding that it has nothing to do with to dominate the sporting world.