Vijender says he has put allegations of involvement in drug scandal behind him
A little over two months after he was implicated and then subsequently cleared of involvement in a drug scandal,Olympic bronze medalist Vijender Singh broke his silence saying the experience had left him stronger and wiser. The former world number one middleweight,who has missed several exposure tours as he battled the allegations added that he was keen to put the incident behind him saying he was back in training and focussed on making the squad for the World Championships in October.
On NADA clearing him
The nightmare is finally over for me and I am back to my normal life. I have started training and looking forward to the World Championships in October. I am thankful to the Haryana Government,the Sports Ministry,the Indian Olympic Association and the Indian Boxing Federation for standing by me and because that gave me a lot of confidence. Now I am back to training in the camp and nothing can be better then this.
On lessons learnt
I believe,whatever God does,he does it for the good,I always try to look at life like that. Even in this incident I am sure God must have thought something good for me. Every incident,good or bad,teaches you something. I realised who are my true friends and who are the hangers on. I realised that difference because all my good friends formed a ring of support around me. Another lesson is that I won’t ever be as casually friendly with anyone as I used to be. I won’t ever leave my car keys or my mobile phone with anybody. I have become wary of people which is quite natural given what I went through.
On charges of drug use
I was in Mumbai when the whole thing broke out. Suddenly I see my car being found somewhere,people taking my name and questions being asked about whether I was taking drugs,it was painful,” he said. May be the TV channels love me a lot,that’s why they kept showing me for so long,it’s ok,there is a price to pay if you are famous.
On the scale of the crisis
I don’t think it was the biggest crisis of the life because life is like that only,it is unpredictable and I am taking it positively. I haven’t lost faith in anything because I am a very optimistic person. I always try to see the good in everything and that gives me strength. Even when I lost in the London Olympics quarterfinals,I said to myself ‘don’t lose heart,God has his own plans’. Actually,life just goes on,you have to accept whatever challenge you face and become stronger.
On scrutiny he now faces
Scrutiny has never scared me because I have had detractors all my life. Even at the peak of my performance,my abilities were questioned by a lot of people. I don’t mind that and neither do I get affected because that’s not my job. My job is to train hard and deliver results in tournaments and that’s how it will always be for me because that is the best way to deal with criticism. My grandmother often told me ‘log unhi ko badnaam karte hain jinka naam hota hai’ (people malign only those who have a name). My family stood by me like a rock during this crisis. I married Archana just two years ago,our life has just begun and there she was,supporting me all through.”
On his future plans
Yes,I was facing a challenge but I would say god is kind that he gave me a support system like this. It’s a closed chapter for me now. I just want to focus on everything that I do inside the ring.