In a heartfelt show of humanity, India’s Olympic medallist, Yogeshwar Dutt, is reportedly refusing to receive his upgraded silver medal from the 2012 Summer Olympics.
Four-time world champion and two-time Olympic medallist Besik Kudukhov failed a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) dope test conducted on his sample from 2012 before the Rio Games. Kudukhov had died in a car crash in 2013 in southern Russia. As a result, Yogeshwar, who had bagged a bronze medal in men’s 60-kg freestyle category in London, joined Sushil Kumar and Vijay Kumar as silver-medallists wrestler from the 2012 London Games.
However, the grappler isn’t exactly keen to receive the silver medal which is rightfully his. “Besik Kudukhov shandaar pehelwaan the (Besik Kudukhov was a magnificent wrestler). Unke mirtyu ke baad dope test mein fail ho jana bahut dukht hai (His dope test returning positive after his death is very sad). Main khiladi ke roop mein unka samaan karta hoon (As a wrestler, I respect him),” Yogeshwar wrote on his twitter handle.
“Agar ho sake toh yeh medal unhi ke paas rehne diya jaaye (If possible he must be allowed to keep the medal).Unke pariwar ke liye bhi samaan purna hoga (It will keep his family’s honour intact). Mere liye manaviya samvedana sarvopari hai (For me humanity is above everything else),” he added.
In London, Yogeshwar had lost his pre-quarterfinal bout to Kudukhov. When the Russian wrestler reached the final, Yogeshwar got another opportunity for a podium finish in the repechage round – he defeated Franklin Gomez of Puerto Rico, Masoud Esmaeilpour of Iran and Ri Jong-myong of North Korea to claim bronze.
Earlier, Yogeshwar had refused to comment on the issue. But on Tuesday evening the wrestler said, “Jo likha hota hai, wo hoke rehta hai (What’s written in the stars is bound to happen).”
Yogeshwar had clarified that he didn’t receive any official confirmation on the elevation of his bronze medal to silver from 2012 London Games. He also dedicated his silver medal to the people of India through his tweet.