An Inspiration to Athletes From Rural India

‘My Achievement Will Inspire Athletes From Rural India’

An Inspiration to Athletes From Rural India

Vikas Rana, a gold medalist in cross-country Skiing, narrates her journey from a sleepy village in Haryana to the world podium. In her own words:

In the serene corners of Sukhain Khurd village in the Uchana area of Jind, Haryana, where the daily rhythm was set by the cadence of agrarian life, I, Vikas Rana, dared to dream differently. At 31, the daughter of a tireless farmer, I recently etched my name in history by clinching India’s first gold medal in the cross-country skiing championship held in Germany on December 31.

The path from the lush fields of my village to the snow-draped slopes of international skiing was no cakewalk. My days were punctuated by grueling training sessions in Gulmarg, Kashmir, where the glistening snow and challenging terrains became the canvas of my journey. Each stride on those slopes was not just a step closer to victory but a testament to resilience, pushing boundaries on unfamiliar grounds. 

As I bask in the applause and recognition cascading from my homeland, I can’t help but credit my success to a force beyond mere physical prowess – my unwavering faith in Lord Shiva. A devout believer, I proudly adorned a ski band on my head inscribed with ‘Mahakaal.’ It wasn’t just fabric; it was a conduit to a divine energy that guided me through challenges, propelling me toward that coveted podium. 

ALSO READ: ‘From A Wheelchair To The World Podium

I clinched the gold in the five-kilometer cross-country skiing event in Germany on December 31. It marked the first-ever medal in such a prestigious tournament. The journey demanded relentless effort and training in the frosty expanses of Gulmarg, Kashmir. The joy and gratitude I feel for the applause from my country are beyond words.

My journey speaks to the resilience of dreams amid financial constraints and modest beginnings. Born into a family where my father toiled the land and my mother dedicated herself to homemaking, I navigated challenges with unwavering support from my family, friends, coaches, and the facilities provided by the sports ministry.

Every ounce of my time was dedicated to practice. Winning a medal is the culmination of extensive preparation and years of planning. I am profoundly grateful to my country for providing me the platform to prove myself.

My story transcends personal triumph; it’s a chronicle of tenacity, determination, and the pursuit of passion against all odds. As I continue to move on the global stage, I hope my journey becomes a beacon for aspiring athletes from rural India, illustrating that with dedication and belief, one can conquer any obstacle and imprint an enduring legacy on the world stage. The odyssey from Sukhain Khurd to international skiing glory isn’t just mine; it’s a narrative of dismantling barriers and embracing the extraordinary.

As told to Deepti Sharma

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