In a shocking revelation, several dope-flunked athletes were not penalised for their offenses from 2001 to 2008 by their national sports federations (NSF) and this came to light after the NADA Anti-doping Panel released a list on the orders of the Delhi High Court.
Around 120 athletes out of the list of 360-odd, whose names were released on Thursday, were found to have been unpunished by their respective federations even after they flunked dope tests.
This can be referred from the columns left blank for required action against these 120-odd athletes in a 37-page list issued by the NADA panel pertaining to the period from 2001 to 2008.
The list was released by the NADA body after Delhi High Court passed an order in July 2009, asking it to take appropriate action against the dope-flunked athletes for the period of 1991 to 2008, on a Public Interest Litigation filed way back in 2000 by 1992 Asian marathon champion Sunita Godara.
Sports Authority of India had submitted two lists of dope offenders -- of 257 and 301 athletes -- before the High Court, one on July 24, 2001 (pertaining to 1991 to 2001) and the other in 2009 (pertaining to 2001 to 2008).
All these names were submitted in a sealed cover by SAI after Delhi High Court issued notices to Sports Ministry in the PIL of 2000.
Godara had filed a Civil Writ Petition in 1998 and Delhi High Court converted it into a PIL two years later.
The first hearing before NADA penal was held on Thursday and next will be on December 23.
In the original Civil Writ Petition of 1998, Godara had alleged that there was "systematically designed state sponsored illegitimate doping control exercise" since 1991 and the authorities "have indulged in a conspiracy of silence since 2000".
In the presentation she submitted before the NADA Anti-doping disciplinary panel, headed by Sudhir Nandrajog, Godara alleged jailed Suresh Kalmadi and Lalit Bhanot as "kingpins in this doping case".
She demanded the panel to start the "hearings" of these cases which she claimed had been swept under the carpet for so long, besides also requesting to issue notices to the athletes whose names are in the list submitted to the Delhi High Court by the SAI in sealed covers.
Suspecting that the first list of 140, submitted by SAI in the High Court pertaining to the period from 1991 to 2001, has names of athletes like PT Usha, Shiny Wilson, Jyotirmoyee Sikdar, Bahadur Singh and other eminent athletes, she said notices be sent to them also.
The list released yesterday provide some interesting facts. For long, it was not known that a footballer had been penalised for doping before Mumbai FC midfielder Nishant Mehra, who was banned for two years ealier this year after testing positive for banned drug tetrahydrocannabinol during an I-League match in Pune.
But, from the list issued yesterday, three footballers had been caught for doping and two had been suspended by the AIFF for six months.
Harbinder Singh and Manchinda Singh were suspended for six months by the AIFF for anabolic steroid nandrolone in tests conducted in 2003 and 2004 respectively during national camps.
Avinash Thapa's 'A' sample was found to have metabolites of marijuana in the test conducted during a National Football League match in Goa in 2005. He was given one month time for his 'B' sample test but no information was given after that.