Former India cricketer Virender Sehwag has requested the government to name a special train and plane after gymnast Dipa Karmakar and athlete Lalita Babar in order to honour their efforts at the ongoing Rio Olympics.
“Reqst to Hon’ble @narendramodi ji & @sureshprabhu ji 2consider d following in honour of #DipaKarmakar & #LalitaBabar,” Sehwag wrote on his Twitter handle on Monday.
“Everyone likes saluting the rising sun. Though our champions in Rio have not won a medal thus far for their incredible efforts and skills, the way some of them have fought against all odds has been amazing. Its important that we honour their efforts,” he added.
Dipa created history when she finished fourth in the final of the women’s Vault event, missing out on what would have been India’s first Olympic medal in gymnastics by 0.15 points.
Her effort in the final included the dangerous Produnova vault which has earned her widespread acclaim.
Lalita, on the other hand, became the first Indian athlete — male or female — to appear in the final of an Olympic track event in 36 years when she qualify for the women’s 3,000 metre Steeplechase.
Lalita produced a brave effort in the final on Monday to finish 10th. She was in fiery form in the qualifying round as well, breaking the national record on the way to booking a berth in the final.
Her effort in the qualifying round is specially praiseworthy as she recoverd from a fall in the early stages of the race to take the lead at one stage before finishing fourth.
The manner in which Dipa and Lalita have overcome hurdles of inadequate finance, lack of facilities and other problems to shine on the biggest stage in the world of sports have earned them laurels from celebrities and common people alike.
According to Sehwag, a special effort on the part of the government to honour Dipa and Lalita will inspire future generations to take up sports.
“I would request Hon’ble PM Narendra Modiji to consider naming a special plane & a train after these two young athletes (even if it is a special for a few days and at the cost of not causing confusion) which in a way will encourage parents and inspire many youngsters to take up less popular sports as a career,” the former start cricketer asserted.