Bhiwani – An Asian Games silver medalist in boxing has to sell ice-creams on the streets of Bhiwani – Haryana to repay the debts his dad incurred to build his sport’s career, as no local minister and politician cares to support him.
Dinesh Kumar – won 17 gold, one silver, and five bronze medals in variety of competitions in India and abroad. But his career came to halt in 2014, when his car collided with a truck near Samana.
He was shown pushing a cart titled ‘Dinesh Kulfi’ in a video posted by ANI news agency. The former boxer is trying to settle his family debts as it kept increasing in lakhs.
“Right now, I have no hope that the government will provide me with monetary aid or employment. None of the political parties that have been in power since my accident have found me worth helping. I want to let the government know that I am wasting away here even though I am still a good sportsperson,” Kumar said.
“I want to help my family pay off the debts they accumulated trying to further my career and then get back into the boxing ring,” he added.
Speaking to media, his elder brother said, “Dinesh won many laurels for India at competitions across the world, and our father took loan after loan to send him to England and other countries. He is lakhs in debt now, and that’s why we are in this terrible state.”
“There’s no help coming from the government, and nobody even wants to know how we are doing. Things would have been very different if this had happened to someone else,” he added.
His former coach, Vishnu Bhagwan, has kept urging Government to help Kumar with monetary aid.
He said, “Dinesh was very agile as a boxer. He won many medals in the junior category, but is now forced to sell kulfis on the streets because of a tragic accident.”
However, Kumar boasted that he has not lost touch with boxing, and to keep his skills active, he teaches free boxing classes to children of a slum area.
“Many of the children I mentored have reached the international arena,” he enthused.
Hundreds of sportsmen in India end up doing menial jobs as Government lacks proper encouragement and support except Cricket, that has eventually made India backwards in top-class games despite talent is second name of the country.