Dutee Chand to appeal against four-year dope ban

India’s top sprinter Dutee Chand who was handed a four-year ban for doping on Thursday, will appeal against the decision of the Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel (ADDP).

Dutee Chand after a race.

Chand, the national record holder in 100m and double Asian Games medallist, tested positive in out-of-competition tests by the National Anti-Doping Agency. Her samples were taken on December 5 and 26. She tested positive for “other anabolic agents/SARMS that falls under World anti-doping agency’s prohibited list of “non-specified substances”. She was provisionally suspended on January 3.

Her counsel Parth Goswami said they will challenge the order.

“It is a clear case of unintentional consumption of a banned substance. We were able to establish the source of the substance in the body which is a substantial proof of lack of intent. Substance was never used to gain any sporting advantage,” he said.

“We are in the process of filing an appeal. We are hopeful that we will be able to convince the appeal panel.”

“Chand has undergone hundreds of dope tests internationally and nationally and has always been clean in her long career. She has had an illustrious career of over a decade.”

During the hearing before the ADDP, her counsels Goswami and Vidushpat Singhania said the consumption of substance was “unintentional” and the ingestion was advised by a physiotherapist who was being regularly consulted by Dutee since 2012. They submitted screenshots of the conversation between Dutee and the physiotherapist, who is from the Pullela Gopichand Academy in Hyderabad, exhibiting the medicines being recommended to her.

The panel, while pronouncing the judgement, however, said based on the findings it is clear this is a case “of intentional doping as there is no reason to believe that an athlete of her stature and repute would be so naive to ingest any substance in her body on advice of someone else.”

“It is the athlete’s personal duty to ensure that no prohibited substance enters their body,” said the panel chaired by Chaitanya Mahajan.

Her counsels submitted that the athlete was Hyperandrogenic owing to which she was having severe groin pain. It was also revealed that Dutee was diagnosed with type 1 cancer.

“Dutee had to go to Tokyo Olympics but could not perform well and did not qualify further. After the athlete came back her ultrasound was done but the source of the pain was not identified after which the athlete consulted Dr. Satpati who recommended an MRI and after seeing the MRI report advised the athlete to leave sports as he diagnosed the onset of Type 1 cancer,” as per the submission made by her counsel.

Dutee herself did not buy the supplement for “hormonal disbalance” and asked her friend Tapi Mishra to get it. Mishra in an affidavit before the deposition, said he himself bought the drug. However, during deposition before the ADDP he said he had asked his manager to purchase it.

The panel noted that it was “satisfied with the source of ingestion of the prohibited substance” but was not able to establish the “no significant fault or negligence.”

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