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Carpenter’s son, tea-stall owner’s daughter, the Khelo India stars figure in PM Modi’s Mann ki Baat

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday addressed the nation through his monthly ‘Mann Ki Baat’ programme and lauded the Indian players who set many records at the recently concluded Khelo India Youth Games.

“A total of 12 records have been broken in these games out of which, 11 records have been registered in the names of female players,” said Modi.

“There has been another special feature of Khelo India Youth Games. This time too many such talents have emerged, who are from very ordinary families.

“These players have struggled a lot in their life and have reached this stage of success,” Modi added during his address.

This time too many such talents have emerged in Khelo India Youth Games, who are from very ordinary families. These players struggled a lot in their life, said the PM.

Among them is 18-year-old Adil Altaf won the gold medal in the boys’ individual 70 kilometers cycle road race at the Khelo India Youth Games. His father Shah Altaf Hussain owns a tailoring shop in Srinagar. “When he (Altaf) started cycling, he would bring a cloth and other materials for me before his training started. I used to work as a weaver before running this small shop. Getting him a cycle worth 5,000 or 15,000 was tough and I would work extra hours to support him. The last two years have been tough due to Covid-19; the only helper I had has left and stitching orders have reduced. But seeing Adil win medals brings joy to us and he makes us proud,” Hussain told The Indian Express.

Kajol Sargar claimed the first gold at the Games and her father serves moong pakoda up at his tea-stall at Sanjay Nagar in Sangli. After his daughter claimed the gold in Panchkula, the street-food cook’s customers were the lucky ones from the Maharashtra city to hear first-hand accounts of the young daughter’s exploits in 40kg from her proud father, to go with their sweet tea.

Another 17-year-old wrestler Tanu who won the gold medal in the women’s 46 kg final is a school bus driver’s daughter. In the women’s 57 kg final, another Haryana youngster 18-year-old Jyoti claimed the title with a win over Pragati of Maharashtra. The youngster, who lost her father a few years ago, started wrestling at Hisar.

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