As a result of India TV impact, Union Minister for Sports Kiren Rijiju has assured help to gold medalist Strength Lifter Sunita Rani, who even after performing good at various national and international competitions, is struggling to make her daily needs meet.
In an attempt to end Sunita's ordeal, India TV arranged an exclusive interaction between Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju and Sunita and Editor-In-Chief and Chairman Rajat Sharma in Aaj Ki Baat where the minister assured that he and his ministry will help her and guide her in whichever way possible.
Sunita Rani, who hails from Haryana's Sisar Khas village of Rohtak district, has won numerous national and international medals in strength-lifting but presently works as domestic help in the village to earn her livelihood after she didn't get any help or financial support from the government.
Upon getting to know about Sunita's condition, India TV approached her and learned how miserably she was leading her daily life.
Sunita’s deplorable living conditions were only found when, India TV's correspondent paid her a visit in Rohtak district in Haryana. It was found that neither Sunita had money to buy supplements to support her strength for the sport she follows, nor does her family can arrange for proper food and other daily life needs. Moreover, Even their house was built on a Panchayati land.
Speaking to India TV, Sunita said although she wanted to follow her dreams but was unable to practice due to lockdown adding she wasn't also getting any labour work to give financial support for the family.
Sunita had won gold medal in 52 kg category at state-level in June 2018. She also won gold medal at World Strength-lifting Championship in 2020 which took place in Bangkok besides various other achievements.
Making the nation and her family proud after winning gold, at one point she felt that she would get financial support and fame back at home but it didn't turn out to be.
Sunita said that it was a proud moment for her to win gold for the country but she didn't receive any sort of financial help that could have boosted her confidence. Rather she was forced to work as domestic help in the village to meet her livelihood.
It is to be noted that strength lifting has not been recognised as an Asian or Olympic sport, which is the reason why the government does not provide any financial help.
Though Sunita knew this fact, she has also participated in power lifting and has performed decently.
Speaking on following any other recognisble sport, Sunita said she couldn't choose weight lifting since it needed proper training and good diet both of which requires money which she couldn't afford.
In order to support her passion, her parents took loan (which still has to be paid back) to sent her to Bangkok and participate in a competition.
Sunita's father said they will work hard and do best to help their daughter follow her dreams and won't let her down.
In an attempt to end Sunita's ordeal, India TV arranged an exclusive interaction between Union Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju and Sunita where the former assured that he and his ministry will help her and guide her in whichever way possible.
Rijiju said that for him, every sport is important but they have to work according to the rule book. Although, the Union Sports Minister said sports is a state subject, therefore, it can also help Sunita in every best way possible.
Further speaking on the matter, Rijiju said Sunita's sport is neither an Asian or Olympic game, therefore, she is not eligible to get financial support or funding from the government. However, the state government can take this ahead and help a sportsperson.
Rijiju reiterated that he would like to help Sunita in her case even though her sport is not an Asian or Olympic recognise game.
Under PM Modi's leadership, any sportsperson who had played for India in Asian games, Olympic or any international event, irrespective of whether they have won any medal or not, the government is giving financial support to them, Rijiju added.