Running a treadmill for 2 minutes is a task to you? Tell this to 19 year old Hima Das and she would probably laugh on your face. Nicknamed the Dhing Express, Hima is an ace Indian sprinter from the state of Assam. Born near the town of Dhing to Ronjit and Jonali Das who are both farmers by profession, Hima Das was much into sports, especially football. However, she later shifted to sprint running and now holds the record of being the first Indian female athlete to win a gold medal in a track event at IAAF World U20 Championship. She also holds the current Indian national record of 50.79 seconds in 400 metres that she clocked at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The commendable sprinter has won five gold medals within an unbelievably short span of 19 days. Das has faded in as a pot of water to the thirsty Indian athletics. After 2019 Cricket World Cup, all the attention has relocated towards Hima. Grabbing her fifth gold medal of the month on July 20, where she clocked 52.09 seconds to finish first in 400m in Czech Republic, Hima has raised amazed eyebrows. She has become the inspiriting force to the hearts of Indians. Das won her first gold medal at the Poznan Athletics Grand Prix in Poland, followed by another gold at Kutno Athletics Meet also in Poland. She claimed a third gold at the Kladno Athletics Meet in the Czech Republic and a fourth one at the Tabor Athletics Meet.
“There is no stopping this golden girl of India.” Her achievements were under praise by a lot of public figures – from Sachin Tendulkar to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Hima Das replied to every tweet thanking them for their congratulatory wishes and the immense support. ‘Running queen’, ‘nation’s pride’ and ‘consistent inspiration’ are just a few terms that have been used on a regular basis to describe this perseverant winner.
Needless to say, Das is an incredible sprinter and has proved her consistency, but let’s not forget V. K. Vismaya, Dutee Chand, Srabani Nanda and other such medalists. In a society obsessed with medicine, law and engineering as the only career options with scope for a successful future, sports lie comparatively low on the career charts. While all athletes in India have it tough, sportswomen are even more deadlocked. Overcoming such obstacles and coming out on the top, such women athletes have provided evidence of their capabilities. In many countries, including India, sports or athletics are not deemed to be a strong choice for a successful career. Getting funds for the professional athletes has become a task, and this scrabble for money takes the athletes’ minds off their practice and competitive spirit; and it can even make athletes consider quitting as it leaves not another option for them.
Even in today’s times when there is considered a scope in almost all kinds of professions, athletics are still lagging behind. However, Indian medalists who are bringing glory to the country with the wins will usher an opportunity for those desiring to pursue their passion of becoming a sportsman. Hima Das, especially, at the age of 19 who has brought 5 Gold’s in a mere 19 days, has set a huge benchmark and proved to be an inspiration to those wanting to grow in the field of athletics, along with providing an assurance to bring in support to and for them.