May 23, 2019

Ignored by Authorities, Supported by Public – Sorry state of Athletes in India

sahanaIt All started in 2012, couple of months ahead of #LondonOlympics2012, Indian sports administration was caught completely off guard, Indian athlete Ms. Sahana Kumari achieved a feet, which none in  India had achieved or had thought possible; Ms. Sahana Kumari in a domestic High Jump event, cleared 1.92 Mts successfully, the requirement for  any athlete to get selected for Olympics directly for high jump. Such was the clumsiness, that no official effort was made; eagerness was missing in  the administration to send an Olympic entry pass of Sahana, who became the 1st Indian to represent India in Olympics in High Jump, 1st time ever in history of India. IMG_8095A couple private citizens through  EkAurPryaas platform; gathered support of the social media users to collect funds, for enabling travel of  the Coach of Ms Sahana Kumari  so that his guidance and assistance was available to her right through until her event was concluded getting travel documents in order and other miscellaneous cost. While Ms. Sahana could not win a medal at the London Olympics, she did reach finals of two international events Asian Games and Common Wealth Games in 2014; Ms Sahana Kumari won gold Medal for India in South Asian Games Add to this, MsSahana Kumari was also part of training group for Mr. Girisha Hosanagara Nagarajegowda, a Paralympian High Jumper, who won Silver medal at Parlymics 2012.


Fast forward to 2016, but it’s more of replay of 2012, Sports Authority still in slumber and red-tapism; while private citizens taking upon themselves to assist athlete to bring glory for the nation. While it is equally important to hail the achievement, as administration looking for sports, it’s even more important to nurture potential talent  be given an opportunity to convert into gold.

After Sports Authority having cancel the contract with Ms. Nikitin Evengy, a coach under whom Sahana Achieved most of her success, #RioOlympics2016 became distant dream for her; until she resolved to go to Ukraine, where Mr. Evengy resides and continue training to improve her chances to get selected for #RioOlympics2016 and also probably better her rank position in the same. It was again a call by private citizens to crowd source the funding to send a potential medal winning athlete realize her dream. However, this time challenge is tougher, as Olympics fever has still not gripped all, thus idea of training did not receive much of traction; however on personal call and request, again the cause received boost, where many large hearted philanthropist made their  contribution for  the cause. We also have few NRI friends taking up the case with Indian Embassy at Ukraine office; and also an Indian Foreign Service Officer took it on himself to coordinate the effort and communication at Ukraine, while an athlete neglected by Sports Authority of India, received a deserved welcome and assistance in Foreign Land to reach at her Coach’s institute.

Even though initial assessment of the expenditure was t Rs. 15.0Lakhs, subsequent understanding of the cost of travel, participating in the qualifier event at Ukraine, having nutrition supplements for proper maintenance among other expenses, the target has increased to Rs20.0 Lakhs. With the help of few Philanthropists, amount till date received in Rs2.26 Lakhs, based on which Ms. Sahana has taken one way ticket to Ukraine for training, not knowing the source of remaining amount, and also place hope on us Indians, that where Sports Administration failed, we Indians will step up to meet the challenge again.

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In 2012 Media covered the people’s effort widely


Times of India – 2012