HC notice to Centre on plea by Olympian Renjith Maheshwary to revoke cancellation of Arjuna Award to him

  • | Saturday | 4th December, 2021

Kochi, Dec 4 (PTI) The Kerala High Court on Saturday issued notice to the union government on a plea by Olympian Renjith Maheshwary, seeking to revoke the decision to cancel the Arjuna award that was originally conferred upon him. Justice N Nagaresh issued notice to the union government, Athletics Federation of India, the National Anti-Doping Agency and others on the plea of the 36-year-old national record holder. Maheshwary submitted that he and his wife are subjected to continuous taunts from society about the "fake and arbitrary doping charges" of the year 2008, which was inculpated upon him in 2013 by a press release. The petitioner said he was startled that such a charge arose out of nothing. Maheshwary was conferred the Arjuna Award in 2013 but on August 31, 2013, just before the award ceremony, he was informed orally by the union government to withdraw from the award ceremony. He said on September 19, 2013, the Union government issued a press release, which mentioned that the award was kept in abeyance pending investigation about an alleged suspension and ban over a doping charge of 2008 with respect to the 46th National Opn Championship held at Kochi. Maheshwary claimed that he never had been informed about the said charge of doping during 2008-2009, or about the punishments. He said his name was never there in the list of sportspersons found to have used prohibited drugs, published by the National Dope testing Laboratory, which got accreditation in 2009. "The persons whose names were there in the published list of dope tainted sports persons were bestowed with the Arjuna Award in 2005 and 2021," Maheshwari said. He said these allegations were the sole reason why the Arjuna Award was denied to him in the last minute. Maheshwary also added that from the press release it was clear that the investigation was done only on the basis of some reports that came in the media on the day of conferment of the award by the President. PTI RRT APR APR

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