London Dreams

Aritra Jyoti Chakraborty

Working as a Software Developer for Intergraph consulting, he has done his Masters in Computer Science from the prestigious Rutgers University Of New Jersey. An avid reader, he reads both fiction and non-fiction and whenever anything catches his eye he makes it a point to pen down his thoughts about it. His hobbies include running and supporting Manchester City, whose matches he follows judiciously.

Vijay Kumar, Gagan Narang, Sushil Kumar, Yogeshwar Dutt, Saina Nehwal and MC Mary Kom.

Do these names ring a bell? Well, if it doesn’t, you have been seriously ill informed over the past month’s affairs. These athletes have all represented India in the London Olympics 2012 which culminated last month and have all returned home with a medal that they will cherish throughout their lifetime.

For any athlete securing a medal in the Olympics, which is a quadrennial event, is the pinnacle of their career, and being from India makes it harder, as the infrastructure and facilities available here are not at par with international standards. Therefore, all these people have fought against all odds to etch their names into the pages of history.
Now let`s run the rule over them one by one:

Vijay KumarVijay Kumar used to be a subedar in the Indian Army and took up shooting pistol as a hobby only to excel at it. He hails from a village called Barsar in Hamirpur district of Himachal Pradesh. Being from humble origins he used to practice with pistols provided by the Indian Army. After the Olympics he was promoted to the post of subedar major which according to him was long overdue.

Gagan NarangGagan Narang is an ace Indian shooter, he won the bronze medal in men`s 10m Air Rifle event in London Olympics 2012. He was born in Chennai, raised in Hyderabad.
He touched the gun for the first time at the age of six for shooting down balloons at Chennai Marina Beach Carnival. His prowess at shooting was well brought out at that age which he sharpened later.

Sushil Kumar 

Sushil Kumar won the silver medal in the Men`s 66kg Freestyle Wrestling in the London Olympics, thereby becoming the first Indian to win back to back Olympic Medals. He too hails from a modest background and has become a superhero in his village.

Saina NehwalNext comes Saina Nehwal who is originally from Haryana but resides in Hyderabad. She was one of the few who were expected to get a medal at the Olympics. She didn`t disappoint and conquered the Chinese brigade to be the first Indian to win a medal in badminton in Olympics. She is coached by Pullela Gopichand, who himself was a well-known badminton player who won the All England Open.

Yogeshwar DuttThen there is Yogeshwar Dutt, he was something like a bolt from the blue, not many had heard his name before the start of the Olympics. But, he too wrote his name in the history books by winning the bronze medal in wrestling.

MC Mary Kom Last but not the least, is the boxer from Manipur Mary Kom, she too was a pre-tournament favorite and won the bronze medal in women`s boxing in the 49 kg weight category. Being a former World Champion, a medal was expected from her and she didn`t disappoint.
6 medals is a rich haul for us considering that in Beijing 2008 we had managed only 3. This will hopefully inspire many youngsters to take up sports and start believing that they too can conquer the world stage.

So, let us forget all our differences and salute these Olympic Champions who have given their all to put India`s name on the world map and put a smile on each Indian`s face despite the troubled times that we are going through.
Hope by the time the next Olympics come around in Brazil, India can win many more medals.

As Walt Disney has wisely said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.” So never stop dreaming. 

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