Olympic-Winning Indian Boxer Likely To Face Doping Test

Indian boxer and super heavyweight pugilist Ram Singh, who is under detention in a multi-million dollar drug racket, has claimed that he and Olympics bronze medalist boxer Vijender Singh had tried drugs, but just for the sake of “adventure”.

Singh went on to admit that he and Vijender were in constant touch with drug smuggler Anoop Singh Kahlon, a former shot putter, who was arrested on March 7, police said. Ram Singh also claimed that they had taken a very small quantity of drugs, less than two grams each and were not habitual takers of drugs and just tried it for adventure and not to improve stamina or performance. He also remarked that he and Vijender Singh met drug dealer Anoop Singh Kahlon 3-4 times since December.

Twenty-six kilograms of heroin was recovered by police that was worth Rs. 130 crores in the international market, from the possession of Kahlon and he reportedly told the police that Vijender Singh and Ram Singh were his “clients”. Kahlon said boxer Vijender was in touch with some Mumbai celebrities, who were regulars in rave parties and took drugs while Ram Singh said we did not pay anything to Kahlon for drugs. Ram, a former National Championships medalist, later retracted from his statement and said he and Vijender Singh took drugs thinking it was food supplement.

It was further revealed that Ram Singh drove Vijender’s Ford Endeavor, registered in Vijender’s wife’s name, to Kahlon’s Zirakpur apartment, where the keys to the boxer’s SUV were found. Officials of the India’s National Institute of Sports (NIS), Patiala, have expelled Ram Singh from their hostel as he has confessed before the Punjab Police about taking drugs. It is believed that Vijender had allegedly promoted Ram Singh in various platforms by using his influence and the two were close friends and roommates at NIS for about six years. NIS director L S Ranawat said Ram Singh was the 51st member of the boxing camp and we had given him special permission on the recommendation of Vijender Singh.

Replying to the accusations, Vijender said he had nothing to do with drugs and is ready to join investigations at any point of time and also ready to undergo any kind of dope test. Vijender Singh has never failed a drug test earlier. A DSP rank officer with Haryana police, Vijender Singh, said he may have met Kahlon but don’t know him personally or directly and said his name is unnecessarily being dragged into this drug smuggling scandal. Vijender will be questioned either at the Haryana Police headquarters in Panchkula or the Punjab Police headquarters in Chandigarh, according to highly placed sources in the Punjab Police. He had contacted the Punjab Police through Haryana Police officials and agreed to be questioned. It is believed that he will be called for a dope test soon.

Vijender Singh Beniwal was coached by the Indian Boxing Coach Gurbaksh Singh Sandhu and won the bronze medal at the 2006 Asian Games in Doha after losing the semifinal bout against Kazakhstan’s Bakhtiyar Artayev. He defeated Carlos Góngora of Ecuador 9–4 at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics in the quarterfinals which guaranteed him a bronze medal that was the first ever Olympic medal for an Indian boxer. In 2009, the International Boxing Association (AIBA) announced him as the top-ranked boxer in its annual middleweight category list with 2800 points.

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