Speaking at a function to announce actor Suniel Shetty as brand ambassador of the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA), Rijiju said that clean sports is the agenda of the government and players must adopt fair practices to achieve success and not resort to foul means like doping which brings bad name to the country.
“I am not saying all dope offenders took prohibited substances unintentionally, some take intentionally but there are others who take them without knowing the contents of drugs,” he said.
“That’s why there is the need to spread awareness about clean sports, about being careful in what you take in as supplements, etc. Besides conducting an aggressive campaign against intentional doping, there is also a need to impart awareness to those who don’t have intentions to cheat but found doping because of lack of knowledge,” he added.
Lauding the role of NADA in creating awareness about doping, the Sports Minister said that with limited resources NADA is doing commendable work in enlightening players about doping and its ill effects.
This year, more than 150 athletes have failed dope tests. “We have to nurture a culture of clean sports in this country. Scandals in sports (through doping) are very disturbing. No doubt, we want India to become a sporting power but we cannot allow these kinds of things (doping) to happen. Clean sports are an absolute necessity,” Rijiju said.
The minister also complimented Shetty for being appointed the brand ambassador of NADA. He said, “Shetty is a fitness icon and his services for this cause will inspire everybody to stay healthy, fit and adopt fair means in sports”.
Addressing the gathering, Shetty said that ayurveda and yoga have immense power to make people fit and healthy. He said India is so rich that it has everything to give us a healthy life. He also mentioned that there is no short cut to success and knowledge of right and wrong is essential for everybody.
Speaking on the occasion, NADA DG Naveen Aggarwal said that India is fast becoming a sporting nation. “Our players must achieve success by hard work and not by resorting to doping.”
He said NADA is committed to make players aware of menace of doping which destroys promising careers in no time.