While it’s good news that the Haryana government plans to provide 100 wrestling mats to akhadas in the state, it’s also slightly damning that it takes a movie for administrators and officials to realise that sportspersons need basic facilities (even as basic as mats).

Aamir Khan starrer ‘Dangal’ , which charts the journey of Mahivir Singh Phogat training his daughters into becoming international champions – is doing pretty well at the box office – and the film has suddenly turned the spotlight wrestling. 

b’Geeta Phogat, Mahavir Singh Phogat and Babita Kumari. PTI’

Geeta Phogat and Babita Kumari have also given multiple interviews on seeing their lives portrayed on screen, and have admitted that it’s a bit sad that it took a movie for people to recognise their achievements.

“I know people knew us by names before also. But it has taken six years after we won the medals for us to get famous. It does feel bad, but the sadness is slowly going away,” Geeta had said.

News agency IANS reported that Haryana’s Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, who met wrestling champions and Mahavir, confirmed that his government had set up a committee led by the Chief Secretary to streamline the process of giving employment to the state’s outstanding sportspersons. 

So as the new year sets in, let’s hope that more movies on India’s sportspersons are produced – if nothing, at least the government will take notice of their struggles.

Feature image source: PTI