Athlete gender question arises

2012-06-15 10:17
Pinki Pramanik (File)

New Delhi - The gender of an athlete who won a women's relay gold medal at the 2006 Asian Games has been called into question following rape allegations made by another woman and widely reported in the Indian media.

Pinki Pramanik is alleged to have raped a woman she was living with in the eastern state of West Bengal. The woman alleged that Pramanik was a man and had promised to marry her but later refused to do so.

"We arrested Pramanik after a woman lodged a complaint of rape, stating the athlete was a male and they were living together for the past several months," The Indian Express quoted Deputy Commissioner of Police Subrata Bandyopadhyay as saying. "Pramanik also promised to marry her but later denied."

"We have approached the court seeking permission for medical tests to determine the gender of the athlete and the same has been granted," Bandyopadhyay added.

But Pramanik was reportedly reluctant to undergo the tests.

"I have undergone numerous tests in my career as an athlete," 26-year-old Pramanik was quoted as saying by The Times of India. "Why should I agree to more ridiculous tests?"

The Athletics Federation of India withheld comment on the reports.

"We can't comment on the matter until we get to know more details and get to see the official reports," AFI Director Manohar Lal Dogra told The Associated Press. "Our office will react appropriately later."

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

Read more on:    athletics

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