| NEW DELHI, June 15
NEW DELHI, June 15 An Indian runner who won a
gold medal in the women's 4x400m relay at the 2006 Asian Games
has been arrested on rape charges levelled by a woman who claims
the former athlete is actually a man, Indian police said on
Pinki Pramanik was arrested on Thursday following the
complaint lodged by the woman who said she was the live-in
partner of the athlete, Subrata Bandopadhyay, a deputy
commissioner with West Bengal police, said.
"In her complaint, the woman levelled rape charges against
Pramanik. She said they have been living together for quite a
while," Bandopadhyay told Reuters by phone.
Police have obtained a court order for a medical test to
prove Pramanik's gender, Bandopadhyay said, even though the
former athlete is opposing it.
"I have undergone numerous tests in my career as an athlete.
Why should I agree to more ridiculous tests?" she was quoted as
saying by Times of India newspaper.
Another 2006 Asian Games medallist, Santhi Soundarajan, was
stripped of the women's 800 metres silver medal after failing a
gender test and the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) is
shocked at the possibility of a second such embarrassment.
"It's a tricky situation now and we are waiting for an
official report on her medical test," AFI secretary C.K. Valson
told Reuters on Friday.
"We can't take any decision unless we have the report with
However, Valson was not sure if Pramanik risked losing her
medals even if medical tests went against her.
"I don't think she can be stripped of the medals she won six
years back. A lot of physical changes can take place in those
six years," Valson said by phone.
"We never had any such complaint against her when she was an
active athlete and naturally there was no question of subjecting
her to a gender test.
"You can't put an athlete through gender test unless and
until another athlete has accused her of being a male," added
the AFI official.
(Editing by Nick Mulvenney)