Abhinav Bindra Wins Gold Medal At The Olympics
In news which just came in, Abhinav Bindra won India's first ever individual gold medal at the ongoing Beijing Olympics. The world could say, a first after a century of Olympics ? Nothing to harp about. But for a country, starved of sporting heroes aside of cricket players, which is not even an Olympic event, this is indeed a welcome change. Come to think of it, in Athens 2004, India won its first ever Silver medal through Rajyavardhan Rathore who also featured on Times Magazine's top 100 athletes to watch at this Olympics. And in 2008 India has gone one better.
India needs to shake off it's days of orthodoxy in the field of studies and expand its horizon of fields. There is no dearth of talent in the country of billions. It is a matter of a mental makeover. But, this cannot start without the support of the Sports Authority of India (SAI). With medals at any event, there needs to be a need for greed, to win more, AND more.
SAI needs to take good care of its medal winners, be it at Olympics or at Commonwealth or the Asiad, monetarily and by recognition to encourage sports in the country. A normal middle class family would want to see monetary rewards in their children's sporting honours, to encourage them to participate further. It is encouraging to note Geeth Sethi ,Prakash Padukone, Lakshmi Mittal coming forward to sponsor players, who are genuinely talented and encouraging them.
The best part about today's media is just this. The recognition (sometimes unduly necessitated) that they give to performers and hopefuls is certainly a welcome change, and can only help in India projecting itself as a Sporting nation too. Cricket may earn millions, but unless other sports, which are part of the Olympics are given due importance and recognition, Abhinav Bindras maybe far and few in between.