India to contest in women’s 57kg at 2nd World Olympic qualifiers after Parveen Hooda suspension: BFI

New Delhi, May 17 (IANS): Dealt a huge blow by the suspension of Parveen Hooda, the Boxing Federation of India (BFI) will attempt to recover lost ground by trying to get another boxer to qualify for the Paris Olympic Games via the 2nd World Olympic Qualification Tournament to be held in Bangkok next month.

The BFI had managed to salvage the situation for the country by getting this second chance in consultation with the Boxing Paris Unit, which is responsible for the boxing competition at the Paris Olympics.

However, India can only field a boxer already registered as a reserve for the qualifiers before April 11, 2024, which means that only two boxers, named as reserved in the 60kg and 66 kg categories, are eligible to compete in Bangkok.

Parveen Hooda, who had won a quota for Paris 2024 by winning the bronze medal at the 2022 Asian Games, has been suspended for 22 months by the International Testing Agency (ITA) for three whereabouts failures.

Parveen’s legal representatives, comprising the Krida Legal team led by Vidushpat Singhania and representatives from OGQ along with Boxing Federation of India officials led by Colonel Arun Malik, were in touch with the WADA’s Anti-Doping Ombuds as well as the International Testing Agency (ITA) – the concerned Results Management Authority.

"While it's regrettable that Parveen won't be able to compete for India and will be serving the suspension, I am happy that we were able to at least reduce the suspension period and she will be back in the ring soon. I also extend my gratitude to all who contributed to securing India's continued representation in this weight category for the Paris Olympics," stated Ajay Singh, President of the Boxing Federation of India (BFI).

Following multiple discussions and representations, the ITA has proposed a sanction on Parveen, entailing the imposition of an ineligibility period of 22 months, which has been now backdated by eight months as compared to the initial suspension period of 24 months backdated by 6 months. In essence, the sanction is of 14 months, starting from May 17, 2024.

"We exhaustively pursued every avenue and explored all potential solutions to safeguard the Olympic quota and supported Praveen against potential suspension. Our proactive outreach to ITA and WADA emphasized the unintentional nature of the boxer's actions, particularly given her father's terminal illness,” said Hemanta Kalita, Secretary General, Boxing Federation of India.

“The failure arose on account of Hooda lacking the ability and technical know-how required for operating the Anti-Doping Administration & Management System (ADAMS) platform, owing to which a gap arose in Hooda being able to fill her whereabouts information accurately and consistently. Hooda’s failure to comply in the present instance arose solely on account of her lack of knowledge and technical understanding of the ADAMS platform,” said Singhania, the boxer’s legal counsel.

To once again open the pathway, after receiving an email communication from Parveen expressing her sincere regret in being unable to participate at the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris and bringing glory for India, the Federation has declined the quota spot won by Parveen in the 57kg category so that it becomes eligible to compete at the 2nd World Olympic qualifier once again and aim to regain the spot.



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Title: India to contest in women’s 57kg at 2nd World Olympic qualifiers after Parveen Hooda suspension: BFI

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