New Delhi: The Indian Weightlifting Federation has provisionally suspended 21 athletes after they tested positive for banned substances.
The weightlifters tested positive in different domestic meets as well as out-of-competition tests this year.
Among those suspended is female weightlifter Suneeta Rani, a Commonwealth Games gold medalist at Melbourne in 2006.
IWF vice-president Sahdev Yadav said in a statement that this was "one of the biggest catches in recent times."
Yadav said the athletes were caught using different banned substances but that their bans would not be confirmed until the results of 'B' sample tests are known.
According to World Anti-Doping Agency rules, first-time offenders face the prospect of being banned for four years.