Javelin thrower Shivpal Singh, who participated in the Tokyo Olympics last year, has been suspended for four years by the Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel (ADDP).
Shivpal is the second-ranked javelin thrower in the country, in terms of distance achieved, behind Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra.
The Uttar Pradesh-born javelin thrower was tested out of the competition on 26 September 2021. He tested positive for steroid methandienone. He had competed in the Tokyo Olympics the previous month when he finished 27th in the qualification round with 76.40m.
The 27-year-old javelin thrower was suspended from his provisional suspension date in October 2021, and his suspension would run up to October 10, 2025.
In posting Shivpal’s suspension on its website on Saturday, the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) did not issue the order of the panel, as is customary at least in the case of prominent athletes. No details were available about the arguments put forward by Shivpal or by NADA during the hearing.
A UP Athletics Association official was quoted saying in a report in July that Shivpal had bought some supplements from a shop in Muzaffarnagar and that had turned out to be contaminated.
Shivpal’s doping infraction was kept under wraps by the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) and the NADA for months, so much so, even the athlete started telling the media that he was not involved in any doping issue.
Shivpal has a best of 86.23m, the silver-winning mark at the Asian championships in Doha in 2019. Chopra’s national record, set this season in Stockholm, stands at 89.94m.
He finished eighth in the last Asian Games in 2018 with 74.11m and did not make the final in the 2019 World championships, finishing 24th with 78.97m.
The year 2022 has so far seen some of the prominent Indian athletes being suspended or charged for doping offences. They include M. R. Poovamma (400m), S. Dhanalakshmi (100m/200m), Rajender Singh (javelin) and Navjeet Kaur Dhillon (discus).
Proceedings launched by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) of World Athletics (WA) against discus thrower Kamalpreet Kaur, who finished sixth in the Tokyo Olympics, are yet to be concluded. Long jumper-triple jumper B. Aishwarya who registered a national record in triple jump this season is also facing a doping charge from NADA. She had also posted a long jump mark of 6.73m this season, the second best performance by an Indian, behind Anju George’s national record of 6.83m.