New Delhi, Aug 5: In a major development, Parliament, as reported earlier, passed the National Anti-Doping Bill 2022. It will not only provides for the constitution of the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) as a statutory body for regulating anti-doping activities in sports but also marks the historic occasion when India joins the league of select group of 30 countries that have their own National anti-doping law.
Eminent sports personalities of the country have lauded the Bill saying that this will help to strengthen India's commitment to Clean Sport while ensuring the highest level of integrity among sportspersons competing in national and international competitions.
Speaking about the Bill from Birmingham, Athletics Federation President and ex-athlete Adille Sumariwalla said, "I am very pleased to hear that the Anti-Doping Bill has seen the light of the day. This was started about 6 yrs ago and I want to thank Hon’ble Sports Minister Anurag Thakur for seeing this Bill through in the Parliament. Passing of this bill is a very important step in the right direction as we want to keep the sport as clean as possible with zero tolerance towards doping. This will help achieve the vision of the Hon’ble Prime Minister to help build a sporting powerhouse as well as help in the bid for Olympic Games in India."
Summariwala while welcoming the Bill also added, "This will put India amongst the top nations in the world who are out there to fight the menace of doping."
Khel Ratna awardee Anju Bobby George who is India's first athlete to win a medal at the World Championships in Athletics said that this was a "long pending issue" and added, "I congratulate NADA, Ministry and SAI for working tirelessly behind this. With this, NADA can introduce more labs across the country and increase the testing numbers. This will definitely bring down positive cases. Now, the Bill can help NADA also act as a statutory body. This will result in more power, more funding and this will definitely bring more results."
Olympian boxer Akhil Kumar, who is one of the panellists at NADA said that the Bill was needed to bring in a sense of discipline among athletes, many of who take to doping on the insistence of those around them. "The fact that the Bill looks to question not just athletes, but even "others" around them who often introduce doping into an athlete's life, will ensure clean up of the entire sports ecosystem. Doping is not just harmful for the body but it also turns into a mental issue at times when the athlete realises that his or her career is marred for life. NADA having greater authority will help to significantly bring down cases of doping in India."
Sahdev Yadav, President, Weightlifting Federation of India has sent his heartiest congratulations on passing of the New Anti Doping Bill. The Bill was the need of the hour in sports to curb doping and kudos to the current Government on recognising that and clearing such a comprehensive new Bill, he said. Sahdev Yadav further added, “I hope that with this Bill now it gives the authorities more power to prevent dope related activities and offer stricter punishment to those involved in such unethical activities.”