Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, July 18:
With her dreams shattered after an androgen test ruled her out of the Commonwealth Games at Glasgow at the last minute, a devastated Dutee Chand, Odisha’s top sprinter, arrived here today from Bangalore, where she was undergoing training at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) South Centre.
“Earlier, many people would wait to welcome me on my arrival. But today, there is hardly anybody. I am very sad. I couldn’t do anything for my state. Today I feel like a student, who has failed his matriculation exams,” said a visibly distraught Dutee Chand with her voice choking with emotions on her arrival at the Biju Patnaik airport here.
Speaking to the media on her future move, the sprinter said; “Surely I will keep my hopes alive since I am a player. I will definitely hope to achieve my dream of winning a medal in the Olympics if my state and India government help me in getting cured.”
Dutee, accompanied by the two women coaches Rupanwita Panda and Usha Mohanty, who had been sent to Bangalore by the state government’s Sports department here to fetch her, met state Sports minister Sudam Marandi and Sports Secretary Saswat Mishra on her arrival here.
Minister Marandi said; “We will be writing to the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) seeking the reports of the tests conducted on Dutee. After we get it, we will hold a meeting with her and decide on the next course of action”.
Dutee Chand’s career came to a grinding halt after medical tests conducted by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) South Centre in Bangalore revealed that she was not eligible to compete in the female category due to high testosterone levels in her body.
A press release issued by SAI in Bangalore on Wednesday said; “Preliminary investigations indicate that the athlete is not fit for participation in a female event due to female hyperandrogenism. The athlete will still be able to compete in the female category in future if she takes proper medical help and lowers her androgen level to the specified range.”.
The release had further said; “We reiterate that these test results do not determine her gender. The test simply tells us that she has excess androgen in her body and is therefore not eligible to compete in the female category.”
SAI had conducted the tests following a request from the Athletics Federation of India (AFI).
“The issue of an athlete with hyperandrogenism was brought to our notice by AFI. SAI has conducted this test following regulations set by international sport organisations like the IAAF and the IOC for governing eligibility of females with hyperandrogenism to compete in the women’s competition. This test does not determine the athlete’s gender. As the IOC and the IAAF have banned gender verification tests, we were trying to find out if the athlete has excess androgen in her body,” said the SAI release.