Tainted wrestler stripped of Arjuna

“I am directed to say that the Arjuna Award conferred upon you in 1998 in the discipline of wrestling is hereby withdrawn for your acts of omission and commission which led to your dismissal from Punjab Police and for having been arrested by Narcotics Control Bureau on June 8 for carrying narcotics,” a Sports Ministry letter to the tainted grappler, signed by an under secretary, said.

“You are requested to surrender the statuette and scroll of honour immediately to this Ministry,” it added.

Simultaneously, a circular was issued to all the National Sports Federations, asking them to report any such misconduct by any of the awardees.

“The Awards carry a lot of prestige and honour and therefore, the Awardees are expected to do nothing which is unbecoming of a good citizen and a sportsperson.
“This act has not only brought disgrace to the sports community but has also lowered the prestige of the Award,” the Ministry noted.

Making it clear that there is already provision “for cancellation and annulment of awards to any recipient for specific reasons”, the ministry said it’s incumbent on the part of the state governments and sports bodies, authorised to nominate sportspersons for these awards, to bring such acts of misconduct on the part of any awardee to the notice of the Ministry.

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