To curb age fraud in various national and state-level wrestling competitions, the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) has made the Aadhaar card mandatory for all senior, junior, sub-junior and cadet tournaments.
According to the wrestling federation, apart from age fraud, the move will also prove to be a deterrent for dishonest players who furnish illegal domicile certificates and fraudulently change their state domicile without obtaining a no-objection certificate (NOC) from their parent state.
“Aadhaar has been made compulsory for all senior, junior and cadet categories in national and state-level wrestling championships to prevent fraudulent activities in the sport,” WFI secretary Vinod Tomar told TOI.
“This (move) will weed out dishonest wrestlers who forge documents and commit age fraud. It will also prevent players from manufacturing documents to show illegitimate domicile. If anyone wants to play for another state other than his or her state, then that particular player has to obtain an NOC from the parent state,” he added.
Tomar also stated that the move would be beneficial for wrestlers who do not move forward in their careers since there are players who
usurp their spot by showing illegal domicile. “Now those wrestlers, whose spots are taken away due to others indulging in malpractice, can compete at the national level,” he said.
Even after suffering losses, several wrestlers make fake certificates and come back to play at the junior level by showing forged documents. The WFI secretary stated that such players would now be caught.
“Aadhaar will give us the complete data of any wrestler now and we will keep the records. We will know which championship a particular wrestler has competed in and what his or her age at that time was. The records will also show which venue and what tournament a player has competed in. This information will be recorded on the Aadhaar and fraud will be easily caught,” said Tomar.
Recently, the WFI banned six junior wrestlers for one year after finding out that they were overage. The fraud was caught at the recently-concluded Junior National Wrestling Championship, which was held in Jaipur from February 22 to 25.
Out of the six, two were representing Chandigarh, one Haryana, two Delhi and one turned out for Uttar Pradesh. Four of them were also found guilty of fraudulently changing their state domicile without obtaining NOC from their parent state.
A seventh wrestler (representing Delhi) was also banned for the same duration as he too represented a different state without obtaining NOC from his parent state.