Olympic games are over. Athletes are back home. Did our Olympic journey start on a wrong foot? At a time when Indian athletes should be busy concentrating on preparation for upcoming games, our athletes were busy fighting court battles. Sushil Kumar, star wrestler and medal hope for India, took Narsingh Yadav, a wrestler who has qualified on merit, to court. Court decided in Narsingh's favor and let him travel to Rio.
Then came a charge of using banned performance enhancing substance against Narsingh. National Anti Doping Agency (NADA) gave a clean chit to Narsingh. The wrestler travelled to Rio. World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) then challenged Narsingh's acquittal at the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS). WADA pressed its charge at the fag end of Olympics. May be that was their procedure. Narsingh was not allowed to participate in his event bared 12 hours before start. Not only Narsingh was not allowed to participate in the games, he was evicted from the Olympic village and banned for four years. That means, Narsingh cannot participate in Tokyo olympic games, as well.
Narsingh Yadav saga raises several questions:
- Was Narsingh Yadav given a clean chit by NADA under political pressure?
- If NADA had done a proper job, why did WADA appeal against it, and CAS overturn NADA decision?
- Was Narsingh a victim of power politics? Is this a battle between Haryana lobby, Sushil Kumar comes from Haryana, and Maharasthra lobby, Narsingh Yadav's state? A controversial politician associated with sports was in Rio. Gentleman was out on bail and travelled to Rio without informing court. What was his urgency to go to Rio?
- It is also emerging that junior officers at Sports Authority of India (SAI) and NADA had made written complaint, bypassing Wrestling Federation of India (WFI). Complaint was about use of banned substance by Narsingh Yadav. At whose behest, did these officers write? Why did they bypass WFI?
- Did one rivalry between sports people lead to sabotage of Indian medal? No body knows. Only a proper enquiry may throw light on the issue.
Question remains was Narsingh clean? Narsingh had qualified for the Olympics. Trials were held in the US. No banned substance was found in his body then. Why did he use dope less than a month before actual Olympic games? Was he very clever, or very stupid or a victim of sabotage? No body knows. It is important to note that CAS did not buy the theory of Narsingh's food being spiked. If Narsingh is guilty he should be punished. Infact, Narsingh is already paying for his sins, real or imaginary. If Narsingh is a victim of sabotage, then a probe should reveal it. History is replete with instances when one Indian has pulled down a fellow India. This will not be the last.