Children of Saharanpur have been giving opportunity to Saharanpurians to feel proud of them and the list of such children is expanding steadily. These talented children of Saharanpur are choosing their career diligently and then focusing on it completely. The results are for everyone to see and admire.
The latest name added to the list is of Avani, a 12 year old daughter of Shashikant Tyagi, resident of Madan Enclave, Malhipur Road, Saharanpur. She has been handpicked and adopted by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) under National Sports Talent Contest (NSTC) for Basket Ball. The SAI, under the aegis of Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Govt. of India conducts NSTC to scout sports talent in the age group of 8 to 14 years from various schools and grooms them into future medal hopes by providing to them scientific training. Having come into existence after IX Asian Games held in Delhi in 1982, SAI also bears the responsibility of maintaining and utilizing the various sports infrastructural facilities developed in New Delhi e.g. JLN Sports Complex, IG Sports Complex, National Stadium, Dr. SPM Swimming Pool Complex and Dr. Karni Singh Shooting Ranges.
The importance of succeeding in this gruelling contest for Avani can be gauged from the fact that out of thousands of children participating in the contest from across the length and breadth of the country, SAI admitted only 12 candidates to become future medal hope for India in basket ball. SAI now vows to make all of them the finest sports-persons of India. The childhood dream of Avani of playing for India may finally come true in the years to come although she is a student of Class VI only at present. It is a long – long journey and an arduous one. As APJ’s famous quote goes, “If you want to shine like a Sun, first burn like a Sun.” And this is what Avani is going to do while undergoing training at SAI. She is not allowed even to have a mobile phone with her. Once in 15 days, she can talk to her family for 15 minutes only! Her every second is considered precious. Govt. of India is spending lakhs of Rupees and its best resources and facilities on her training now and she is determined to prove that those who have reposed faith in her abilities have made a right decision.
Shashikant Tyagi, the proud father of Avani and her elder sister Vartika, runs Magicon Institute near Hathi Gate, Court Road Saharanpur. The family seems to have got special leaning for the sports. Avani has been coached by none other than her elder sister Vartika, an undergraduate student of J.V. Jain College, who now plays in Under 19 Basket Ball team for U.P. The youngest child, Naman Tyagi, student of 5th std., is showing interest in boxing and has won medals too.
SAI has adopted various schools on the basis of available sports infrastructure and performance of their children in the field of sports and academics. SAI takes care of 11 disciplines – Athletics, Basketball, Football, Gymnastics, Hockey, Kabaddi, Kho-Kho, Swimming, Table Tennis, Volleyball & Wrestling. The Chhattisgarh Centre of SAI focuses on 4 sports and places its choicest students in either Delhi Public School or Yugantar where they study, play and reside in hostel at govt. expense. Taken in at a very young age, the children move forward while participating in Sub Junior, Junior, Under 19 and finally Senior team.
Avani has been placed at Yugantar – the SAI adopted school in Chhattisgarh where internationally acclaimed basket ball coach Raj Rajeshwar Rao and others hold the responsibility of shaping her career as as international level basket ball player. As a sports star in the making, Avani would represent hopes of India – a land of 130 bn people.
Shashikant Tyagi, father of Avani and Vartika feels that in order to improve the medal tally of our country in international events, we parents need to have a different mindset so that we would start looking at sports as a viable career option for our children where they can shine like anything. We should motivate and encourage our children to prepare themselves for this unexplored field where stakes are high and so are the rewards. He also feels that in a country of 130 bn. people and the size of India, providing sports facilities of international level in national capital only is not enough. Such facilities are required in each state capital and at each divisional headquarter so that even those children who cannot afford to shift to Delhi for availing sports facilities are able to have the same locally .
We take pride in having Saharanpurians like Shashikant Tyagi among us who not only rejoice when daughters take birth in their family but who also groom them to become invaluable citizens and great assets for the society and the country. Let’s have more and more of such families in our society.