New Delhi, August 1: BCCI and the Sports Ministry of India are on a collision path after the Ministry told the cricket governing body that it has no right to conduct dope tests because it has not been authorised by the government or the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA).
In a letter to BCCI CEO Rahul Johri, the Ministry told BCCI that the Board's anti-doping programme lacked integrity and suggested a possible conflict of interest since the body itself tests and sentences its players. Interestingly, this letter was mailed much before Prithvi Shaw tested positive for the presence of banned Terbatuline in his urine sample.
"Article 5.2 of WADA Code provides for sampling of athletes only by an Anti Doping Organisation with testing authority. It is a matter of fact that BCCI is neither an anti-doping organisation with testing authority under WADA Code nor it can acquire such a status," the Ministry's letter dated June 26 stated.
The BCCI's has refused to sign up with the National Anti Doping Agency (NADA), a body assigned by the government to be the watchdog against doping in sports in India.
BCCI has cited flaws in NADA's testing procedures and they even claimed that since they are not a government funded national federation they are not under NADA's watch.
The Ministry rubbished BCCI's claims. "The claim of BCCI having a robust mechanism to ensure Indian cricket is clean and free from doping is not based on facts," the letter said. "In 2018, 215 samples were sent by BCCI to National Dope Testing Laboratory, India, for testing. Of these, 5 tested positive. There is no information as to how these athletes who tested positive have been dealt with," it said.
"BCCI mechanism for adjudication in the event of positive dope result is not in accordance with the principles of natural justice. BCCI as an interested party and also the appointing authority for appointment of officers, tribunal members or appellate authority for adjudication," the letter said.
"All athletes and athlete support personnel who participate in any capacity in any activity organised, held, convened or authorised by organiser of event or league that is not affiliated with National Federation (are subject to testing by NADA)."