The All India Football Federation's (AIFF) general secretary Kushal Das has expressed disbelief and sadness on behalf of everyone associated with the Indian FA, on Subrata Paul's failure of a doping test.
Paul, 31, was tested on in Mumbai ahead of the Indian national team's exploits in Cambodia and Myanmar - at the training camp he was a part of under Stephen Constantine's tutelage. News broke today morning that the two-time Nehru cup winning former India skipper had failed the test, conducted on March 18th. The test was executed by the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA)
"We are very shocked (by the news)," revealed Das, exclusively to Goal.
He further added, "Sample 'A' has tested positive (for a compound). Of course, he can appeal the decision, as per NADA's instructions. I'm hoping he'll appeal."
Quizzed on what the immediate future held for Spiderman, Das wasn't too optimistic. "The ban is automatic from NADA. If he wants to appeal, he can do so and play. But again, it all depends on sample B."
The International Cricket Council's former Chief Financial Officer (CFO) explained there has been no contact from the Arjuna Awardee with him or anyone at the AIFF in light of the issue. "No he's not spoken to me or anyone so far," clarified Das.
"I've personally not seen the report, but it's a banned substance for sure. If it's proved on the report, he faces a suspension of at least four years," concluded a lamenting chief on the pressing issue.
The general secretary's views were resonated by the I-League's Chief Executive Officier (CEO) Sunando Dhar, who also spoke to Goal.
"First of all we are awaiting an official communication from NADA. Obviously, he won't be allowed to participate in any tournament under the AIFF banner," examined the head of the nation's top division, on whether Paul's ban imposed by NADA would be immediate.
"Once I see the papers, then only will I be able to take a call on this. We want to see what the papers that have come from NADA state. Without look at that, it's difficult for me to comment (on Paul's ban)," concluded Dhar.
DSK Shivajians, Paul's contracted I-League club, remained unavailable for comment. He is serving on loan from NorthEast United, an Indian Super League (ISL) side.