NEW DELHI: It wasn’t the perfect day to enterprise out in Delhi on Tuesday. Though it was a public vacation on account of the Republic Day celebrations, a number of elements of the nationwide capital had been witnessing unlucky clashes between the Delhi police and agitating farmers. With the farmers’ ‘tractor rally’ turning violent, the police had barricaded a number of arterial roads.
However, regardless of the challenges, Virender Singh – famously generally known as ‘Goonga Pehelwan’ – did not cancel his scheduled interplay with this correspondent at a espresso store in south Delhi. Virender, a deaf and mute wrestler and a legend in his personal proper, braved a number of diversions and closure of routes to succeed in the venue. He had travelled from his Delhi dwelling in Pul Mithai in Sadar Bazar locality, one of many protest websites in North East Delhi.
A day earlier on Monday, Virender, a three-time Deaflympics gold medallist, had been chosen as one of many recipients of this 12 months’s Padma awards – a Padma Shri, making him the primary from his neighborhood of deaf athletes to realize this feat. It was an enormous recognition of his expertise and the hardships confronted by him since childhood. It was a second of pleasure for your entire differently-abled sporting neighborhood.
Virender appeared a bit misplaced and considerably tense through the interplay. The 35-year-old grappler was accompanied by his pal for 25 years, Rambir Dagar, who in Virender’s personal signal language, is at least his brother. When requested why Virender was tense, Dagar hesitantly knowledgeable that Virender’s almost one-month-old son was sick. Virender was getting a number of Whatsapp video calls from his spouse Anjali Singh, additionally deaf and mute, through the interplay, updating about his son’s situation. In flip, he assured her he could be again with them quickly. Despite the household state of affairs, Virender was keen to oblige and talk about his largest achievement.
“He is worried about his son’s health. But Virender is a strong character. He is a fighter. He is very happy about his Padma achievement. The award was long overdue. It will encourage him to perform well at the Deaf World Championship in May in Turkey and the Deaflympics in Brazil later this year in December. He still has one unfulfilled wish – the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award. Hopefully, his gold winning performance at these two events will make him a strong contender for that next year,” Dagar stated after speaking with Virender in signal language.
Dagar stated the turnaround in Virender’s profession occurred after he bought married to Anjali, who was raised by her uncles in a village close to Nagpur in Maharashtra. Both bought married on January 30, 2020. “Just a month into their marriage, Virender got the good news that the central government has recognised Deaflympics and the Worlds in this category on par with those who compete in the Olympics and Paralympics. It made him eligible for the government’s cash awards. Now he has been chosen for the Padma Shri just a month after the birth of his child. It’s been the best phase for him,” Dagar stated.
Virender’s journey since start has been stuffed with hardships and it is well-documented in a 2013 sports documentary titled ‘Goonga Pehelwan’ primarily based on his life and struggles. He was born deaf and mute and it was his father (a retired CISF officer) Ajit Singh, now 62, and uncle Surender Singh (an inspector with CISF) who performed key roles in introducing him to wrestling.
Both had been related to wrestling and had participated in a number of dangals throughout the nation. For Virender, a profession in wrestling did not occur out of selection however compulsion. Born in Sasroli village in Haryana’s Jhajjar district, Virender was simply eight years outdated when he was delivered to Delhi by his father to get him handled for a foot damage. Around the identical time, Ajit met with a highway accident which badly broken his left leg and consigned him to the mattress for a number of months.
Unable to deal with Virender, it was greatest thought to shift him to his uncle’s lodging in Pul Mithai locality. Since Surender needed to report for obligation on the CISF, Virender was shifted to Bal vyayamshala akhada in the identical locality the place he was launched to wrestling. Soon, with Surender teaching him personally, the ‘Goonga Pehelwan’ began collaborating in dangals within the metropolis’s Mori Gate locality and landed his first-big trophy, the celebrated ‘Nausherwan’ title, profitable Rs 11,000 in money.
Virender’s transition from dangal to mat wrestling was equally seamless. He received the gold within the 76kg weight class on the Cadet Nationals in Haridwar in 2002 and was picked for his first worldwide competitors. However, due to his impairment, he was later dropped and the second greatest in his class was chosen. This snub, due to his incapacity, left Virender heartbroken and he returned to dangals to earn his livelihood.
In 2005, he did what no different deaf wrestler had achieved. His father and uncle got here to know in regards to the Deaflympics and spent Rs 70,000 to rearrange for Virender’s journey. He justified their religion and returned with a gold medal from Melbourne.
However, the win did not deliver any recognition or financial help. Since then, Virender stored juggling between dangals and the Deaflympics and World Championships. Before the Padma award, the one recognition Virender obtained was the Arjuna award in 2016.
WHAT IS DEAFLYMPICS?
Deaflympics (beforehand referred to as World Games for the Deaf, and International Games for the Deaf) is an International Olympic Committee (IOC)-sanctioned occasion during which deaf athletes compete at an elite degree. Unlike the athletes in different IOC-sanctioned occasions (the Olympics, the Paralympics, and the Special Olympics), the Deaflympians can’t be guided by sounds (e.g., the starter’s weapons, bullhorn instructions or referee whistles). The video games have been organized by the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf because the first occasion in 1924. The Deaflympics are held each 4 years.