BENGALURU: “If you dream of achieving something and put in sincere efforts, nothing can stop you from turning it into a reality,” said 29 -year-old Usha Rani, a constable at the Doddaballapur police station, who was part of the Indian women’s Kabaddi team that won a silver medal in the ongoing Asian Games in Jakarta. What next, you ask, and Rani says that all she can think of is winning the gold medal at the Kabaddi Championship next year and she is sweating hard for that.
Hailing from a poor family living in slums in Subedar Palya in Yeshwanthpur, Rani was fond of kabaddi and imagined herself playing for the country whenever she watched the Indian Kabaddi team. She always discussed kabaddi with her father Narasimha and mother Putamma while stringing flowers for a living. Little did she think that her interest in kabaddi and encouragement from family to practice daily in Mata Sports Club could fetch her a job in the police department in 2007.
“It’s a mixed feeling actually. I am happy that we won the silver for the country, but also sad for not having clutched the gold. However, the kind of welcome I received on arrival at the Bengaluru airport from Additional Director General of Police, Karnataka State Reserve Police, Bhaskar Rao sir, and other police staff including my colleagues is something that I cherish forever,” Rani, the youngest in the state police kabaddi team, told Deccan Chronicle.
She said that her achievements are because of the combined efforts of her, her coach Jagadish K. and encouragement from her family and department. “I was always encouraged to play sports, as my father was a kabaddi player and mother was an athlete and a shot putter. My mother could not pursue her dream because of an ankle injury and saw a future star in me,” she said.
Rani was the last to be recruited in the police department under sports quota and since her appointment in 2007, there have been no recruitments under the quota. Rani said that there has to be 12 members in a kabaddi team, but the state police women's team has only nine and most of them are over 35 years old. The joyous Rani said that Mr Rao congratulated her and promised her a promotion and all the rewards applicable....