The Indian athlete had tested positive for the use of a banned substance in 2017.

The doping charge against India’s female weightlifter Sanjita Chanu has been dropped by the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) after the recommendation of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

Several administrative mistakes during the testing of the athlete’s sample turned the decision in her favour. Sanjita Chanu won a gold medal in the 53 kg category at the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.

“WADA recommends–out of fairness to the Athlete–that the case against the Athlete based on the Sample be closed. As a result, the IWF has decided to withdraw the charges against the Athlete based on sample 159 90 00 and to close the matter,” the IWF said in an e-mail.

Sanjita Chanu tested positive for the use of anabolic steroid testosterone. The test was carried out by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) before the World Championships in November 2017 in the USA and then they transferred the results to WADA. However, the 26-year-old Indian weightlifter maintained her innocence from the start.

She was provisionally suspended by the IWF on May 15, 2018, and her ‘B’ sample also came positive on September 11 in the same year. Her provisional suspension was cancelled on 22 January last year after she appeared before an IWF panel on October 18, 2019, in Budapest, Hungary with her representatives.

The IWF has admitted its mistake in giving the exact sample number of Sanjita Chanu’s sample in its report. It had mentioned two different urine sample numbers in its communication of her dope test. WADA had also partially suspended the accreditation of a laboratory, which tested Chanu’s sample in Salt Lake City for a month.