Expressing concern over import and sale of sub-standard and dope laced nutritional supplements for players, Sports minister Vijay Goel has suggested that more and more companies should produce the supplements indigenously and government should support the companies for the same.
Usage of supplements containing banned substances was a major reason for Indian players to be positive in the dope test, said Goel while Speaking at the Conclave on Nutritional Supplements for sports; dope free model organised by National Anti Doping Agency (NADA) in New Delhi recently.
Goel said they did not know how deep the doping has percolated and hence prevention was an important step. The government was determined to take tough anti-doping measures in order to stop the use of banned substances, he said adding that the government was looking to restrict the import and use of such supplements.
Sports was fun and entertainment earlier, but now it was a serious game. A player now has to give attention to issues like doping before playing, said Goel and added that he was worried over this. He informed that some meetings have been held over anti-doping bill and it was progressing. The ministry would also consider the issue of who should buy the supplements, federations or Sports Authority of India (SAI). Whoever is allowed to buy it, but one thing was sure that it has to be dope free.
Earlier, the minister had discussion with sportspersons, sports association and federation office bearers, sports medicine officials, industry representatives and government agencies including Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). Several participants suggested that FSSAI should be asked to take lead for making available dope free supplements. It should frame guidelines, they said.
NADA Director General, Dr Naveen Agarwal, said NADAs detection work was good and India has reached to the third position in the world in it. But, prevention was a serious issue. Despite several steps taken by NADA, including starting intelligence wing, still doping cases were happening. In most of the detected cases it was found that the players were consuming supplements without knowing the ingredients. They were becoming victims, unknowingly and it was our responsibility to save them, he added.
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