SAI official in trouble for allowing banned athletes to train

New Delhi: The inquiry committee, set-up by Sports Minister Ajay Maken to go into the circumstances in which athletes undergoing a doping ban were allowed to train at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) centre at Sonepat, is likely to pin the responsibility on a senior official.

SAI director general Desh Deepak Verma, who along with Sindhushree Khullar, secretary, Department of Sports, formed the inquiry committee, told IANS that the investigation was over and the report will be made public in a day or two.

Though Verma would not spell out the nature of punishment against the official, usually in such cases in the past the official was transferred to a far-flung SAI centre.

Verma, however, refused to name anyone except assuring action against all those responsible for allowing the banned athletes to train at the SAI centre in Sonepat.

"The inquiry is almost over and the findings will be made public in a couple of days," said Verma.

Maken Wednesday expressed serious concern at media reports that banned athletes like Ashwini Akkunji and Sini Jose were training at the SAI Centre in Sonepat and initiated an inquiry.

Ashwini, Sini, Mandeep Kaur, Jauna Murmu, Priyanka Panwar and Tiana Mary Thomas, who have been handed a one-year ban for doping, were found using the training facilities in Sonepat, which is in violation to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code.

WADA in its code says: "No athlete or other person who has been declared ineligible may, during the period of ineligibility, participate in any capacity in a competition or activity (other than authorised anti-doping education or rehabilitation programmes) authorised or organised by any signatory, signatory`s member organisation, or a club or other member organisation of a signatory`s member organisation, or in competitions authorised or organised by any professional league or any international or national-level event organisation."