New Delhi: Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju on Friday said that the Ministry will appeal against the decision of the WADA suspending the accreditation of India's National Dope Testing Laboratory for six months over failing to match the International Standards for Laboratories (ISL).
Expressing his disappointment over the World Anti-Doping Agency's (WADA) decision, he said, "There were some issues in the past. After taking over as sports minister, I have taken cognisance of those issues and a course correction has been initiated."
"It is disheartening that despite these efforts, WADA has taken this stance. We will appeal against this ban and the process of appeal is already underway," he told ANI.
On Thursday, the WADA suspended the accreditation of the National Dope Testing Laboratory (NDTL) due to non-conformities with the ISL as identified during a site visit, including in relation to the laboratory's isotope ratio mass spectrometry (GC/C/IRMS) analytical method, as regulated by the relevant technical documentation.
The suspension, which took effect on August 20, prohibits the NDTL from carrying out any anti-doping activities, including all analyses of urine and blood samples.
In May 2019, disciplinary proceedings were initiated by WADA's Laboratory Expert Group (LabEG) and subsequently carried out by an independent Disciplinary Committee, which was mandated to make a recommendation to the Chair of the WADA Executive Committee regarding the status of the laboratory's accreditation.
During the period of suspension, samples that have not yet been analyzed by the NDTL; samples currently undergoing a confirmation procedure; and any samples for which an Adverse Analytical Finding has been reported, must be securely transported to another WADA-accredited laboratory.
This is in order to ensure continued high-quality sample analysis, which also helps preserve athletes' confidence in this process and the wider anti-doping system.