Delhi Dynamos' defender Rana Gharami has today been slapped with a provisional suspension from all football, after testing positive for Prednisone, a banned substance under the National Anti-Doping Agency's (NADA) norms.
Gharami was tested on January 31, when Prednisone and Prednisolone metabolites were found in his system for which he didn’t have a therapeutic use exemption.
If further NADA investigations find that Gharami's use of Prednisone was intentional, he will face a ban up to four years, given this was his first offence.
Although Prednisone, does have some medical uses, it is said that athletes sometimes consume the drug as it enhances energy levels, and as a result, are a direct performance-enhancer.
Sportskeeda reached out to Delhi Dynamos CEO Rohan Sharma, who confirmed that the club had been intimated about Gharami's transgression, but that the NADA letter was not adddressed to the club.
A Delhi Dynamos official also said the club is now looking to ascertain the circumstances and sequence of events under which the transgression took place. He said that if it is found beyond reasonable doubt that Gharami acted on his own terms, while consuming the substance, there is little the club can do, despite the defender having another year left on his contract.
Gharami now faces a provisional suspension, until further ruling. The player can request for his B sample to be tested, or accept the charge and face the corresponding consequences.
The AIFF, FIFA and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) have been sent a copy of the report with the evidence against Gharami, as well.
Gharami made appearances for the Delhi Dynamos in the 2018-19 season, as the team couldn't improve on their 8th-place finish from the previous season.
Gharami lit up the league and stole the limelight on his debut for the Lions, as he plundered a 40-yard wonder goal past Vishal Kaith in Delhi's opening game of the season - a 1-1 draw against FC Pune City.