Vegetable seller from Meerut secures place in Indian team, will play at World Cup

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Meerut (Uttar Pradesh): Since the time of the Mahabharat, countless generations of Indians have grown up on tales of legendary warrior Ekalavya and his devotion to his guru. Archer Neeraj Chauhan is the modern embodiment of the iconic warrior. 

Neeraj Chauhan, the archer son of Akshay Lal Chauhan – a cook in the mess of Kailash Prakash Stadium in Meerut, Uttar Pradesh – has secured a place in the Asian Games, Archery World Cup and World Games. Neeraj achieved this feat by securing the second position in the archery trials held in Sonipat, Haryana from March 24 to 30. 

After his father lost his job during the coronavirus pandemic, Neeraj has achieved this position by selling vegetables with his father and practicing continuously.

Sold vegetables after his father lost his job

19-year-old Neeraj Chauhan’s father lost his job during the coronavirus pandemic. After this, the financial condition of the home deteriorated, so he sold vegetables on the road side. Even after this, he did not give up on archery. Even in this bad phase, his focus remained on his goal. He has made it to the Archery World Cup, World Games and Asian Games through his stellar performances. He performed well in the archery trials held by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) in Sonepat, Haryana.

High Performance Director, Archery Association of India (AAI), Sanjeevan Sinha termed Neeraj’s performance as the best. He has expressed confidence that Neeraj will be able to win the cup for India.

Akshay hails from Gorakhpur

Akshay Lal Chauhan is originally from Gorakhpur. He has worked as a cook in the mess of Kailash Prakash Stadium for thirty years. Akshay Lal lost his job during the coronavirus pandemic. Akshay Lal started selling vegetables in order to feed his family. 

His archer son Neeraj and boxer son Sunil also started helping in his work. Meanwhile, the video of Neeraj and Sunil selling vegetables went viral. The cognizance of this was taken by Union Minister Kiren Rijiju. The ministry gave assistance of Rs 5 lakh each to both the brothers. After this Neeraj increased the focus on his game. A few days later, he got selected in ITBP from sports quota.

Second place in archery trials

Neeraj participated in the archery trial held in Sonipat, Haryana from March 24 to 30. He got second place in this. With this, Neeraj has made his place in the Asian Games, World Cup and World Games. The Asian Games will be held in Jakarta in November, while the World Cup will be held in Antalya, Turkey in April and the World Games in the USA. 

In all these events, Neeraj will now face the challenge of hitting the target. If he succeeds in achieving his goal by maintaining his concentration, then not only Meerut, the whole country will be proud of his achievement.

first published:March 29, 2022, 11:14 a.m.

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