Questions raised over hurdler’s mysterious death | Sunday Observer

Questions raised over hurdler’s mysterious death

1 May, 2022

Athlete Kaushalya Madushani, 25, was found dead at her home on April 24 in Kuliyapitiya after allegedly committing suicide. This happened just one day after competing on the final day of the national athletic championship held in Diyagama where she won the 400m hurdles event.

Could this unfortunate incident have been prevented, is the question that will be asked by all concerned in the daily lives of sports personalities?

“We have created a hot line under the IOC’s Safe Sports Policy three years ago. I don’t know what drove her to take her own life, but there are ways to prevent such situations,” said Niloo Jayathillake who is a member of the NOC’s women’s committee.

“Madushani would have been going through psychological and mental pressure and this could have led her to taking her own life,” said GLS Perera a committee member of SLA.

Madushani’s grieving sister Pannariyangani Susima giving evidence at the inquest said that the 400-metres hurdler had lived in a separate house with her mother and was serving as a lance corporal in the Army at Panagoda camp.

“I went to her house to invite her for breakfast. Another friend had come to invite Madushani for her wedding. The doors and windows were locked. I knocked on the door but there was no response.

Then I went to the window of her bedroom. As one window was open I looked into the room and saw my sister kneeling next to the bed.

“I saw a rope around my sister’s neck. I screamed out loud. On hearing this, my husband and the people from around the house came running to my aid. My husband broke in from the back door and entered the room and cut the rope from my sister’s neck. Then we rushed her to the Kuliyapitiya teaching hospital. There we were told that she was dead. I can’t imagine why my sister had done such a thing,” said Susima.

Madushani was given an insight about the IOC’s Safe Sports Policy which is now adopted by the NOC SL Women’s Committee - working under the auspices of the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka.

Madushani, a resident of Kuliyapitiya had represented Sri Lanka in the 400m hurdles event. She finished second in the 400m hurdles at the 2014 Asian Junior Championships, won a bronze at the 2016 South Asian Athletics Championships and gold at the National 400m hurdles Championships plus a silver at the 13th South Asian Athletics Championships in Nepal in 2019.