Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Athlete declared male after rape claim

Successful Indian female sprinter who has just been
decared a man: Pinki Pramanik. Image: NDTV
Indian authorities investigating a rape case say a sprinter who won a women's relay gold medal at the 2006 Asian Games is actually a man.

Police charged Pinki Pramanik on Monday with raping and assaulting a woman she was living with in the eastern state of West Bengal. The woman alleged Pramanik was a man who had reneged on a promise to marry her.


Indian authorities say an eight-member medical board submitted a gender test along with the charge sheet that concluded Pramanik was genetically male.


Another Indian medalist at the 2006 Asian Games, Santhi Soundarajan, was stripped of the women's 800 meters silver medal after failing a gender test shortly after the games.


The athlete was arrested June 14 and remanded in judicial custody the next day after her companion, a divorcee and a mother of one, filed the police complaint.


After the arrest, Pinki was taken to a private nursing home for a medical check-up where the test reports claimed that the athlete was indeed a male. The athlete was taken to the Barasat district hospital and finally to the SSK Hospital for the tests.


Pinki was granted bail July 10 and released a day later after spending 26 days in judicial custody.


Pinki, who retired from athletics three years ago, won gold in the 4x400 metres relay at the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar. Pinki was a silver medallist at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games the same year.

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