Brazilian shot-putter Thiago Paulino was stripped off his gold medal more than 10 hours after he had thrown his match-winning throws at the Men's F57 category of the recently concluded Paralympic Games. The 35-year-old had protested right on the podium as he was receiving his bronze medal. Although Paulino was standing on the third-place podium, he was pointing towards the first place position and made everyone aware that he thought he was the rightful winner of the gold medal.
As Thiago was put on the podium, he hit his chest several times, put the “no” sign with his hand, and then signalled number 1. He continued the gesture even after receiving the medal. However, he did put the bronze medal around his neck. The Brazilian was angry throughout the ceremony and even lowered his head and held up a fist protest against the unfair decision that cost him the honour of a Paralympic gold.
Notably, it was the Chinese Paralympic Committee that had sent a formal complaint against Thiago's second and third attempts, which included his gold-winning 15.10m throw. Moreover, after invalidating his best throws, he was only deemed worthy of a bronze.
No image of fault or obstruction of rules has been revealed
As per the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), the official event video of the performance was viewed and assessed before coming to such a big decision. Meanwhile, the Brazilian Paralympic Committee believes that the Chinese were doubtful even during the event but the referees did not pay any attention to their concerns following which an official complaint was filed. Although the appeal was moved in favour of the Chinese, what makes the decision controversial is the fact that no image of fault or obstruction of rules has been revealed in the public domain. This has left the Brazilian even more disheartened leading to the protest.
No evidence provided for changing the decision
In fact, the Brazilian TV footage clearly shows that the athlete hasn't breached any law in terms of the movement yet the jury has said that their decision was based on another angle of the video. Shockingly, no evidence has been provided for their call. The President of the Brazilian Paralympic Committee jumped into this matter and outlined the lack of transparency in the jury's call of deciding against giving their athlete a gold medal.