GB Pant Hosp to conduct gender verification tests of athletes

Last Updated: Sep 19, 2010, 11:00 AM IST

New Delhi: The Commonwealth Games Organising
Committee has entrusted a prominent hospital in the capital to
conduct gender verification tests to determine the sex of a
participant in case of any suspicion.

"A gender verification committee as per Commonwealth
Games Federation guidelines has been formed at the Govind
Ballabh Pant Hospital. All cases requiring gender verification
shall be referred to this hospital for processing as per CGF
guidelines," S Bhattacharjee, Director, Directorate of Health
Services, Delhi government said.

"The committee will comprise a gynaecologist, an
endocrinologist, a general surgeon and a representative of the
Games organising committee," he said.

Nearly 71 countries are participating in the sporting
extravaganza scheduled to be held in the city from October 3
to 14.

"There is always a fear that male athletes would pose as
female athletes and have an unfair advantage over their
competitors. Someone may be an intersexed individual also. No
unfair practise by athletes over their competitors will be
entertained," Bhattacharjee said.

Among the many cases, Indian middle-distance runner
Santhi Soundarajan who won the silver in 800 metres at the
2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar failed the gender verification
test and was stripped of her medal.

Similarly, German athlete Dora Ratjen had set a world
record for women`s high jump at 1938 European Championships.

However, tests by the German police concluded that she was
actually a man who then took the name Heinrich Ratjen.

PTI