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Go natural, says Mr World

Ngangbam Shantikumar Meitei shows his medal

Imphal, Aug. 18: After “repaying” his home state with a Mr World title, Manipur-born Taiwanese bodybuilder Ngangbam Shantikumar Meitei wants to popularise the natural bodybuilding movement in Manipur.

Natural bodybuilding is a form of bodybuilding that does not use performance-enhancing drugs, including anabolic steroids, insulin, diuretics and human growth hormone. Before any competition the contestants need to undergo doping tests. If one fails to clear the test, he is not allowed to take part in the competition.

In June this year, 48-year-old Shantikumar Meitei won the International Natural Bodybuilding Association’s Mr World competition (40-49 age group category) that was held in Zakynthos, Greece.

He is married to a Taiwanese girl and is an English professor at De Lin Institute of Technology, Taiwan. He has four children — two daughters and two sons.

Meitei along with his wife Ng. Chen Nan Tai, who is also an English teacher and their four children, came to Imphal to meet his relatives who live in Moiranghanuba Leirak, Imphal West. They left Imphal today for Taiwan.

Meitei is happy about the craze of bodybuilding among Manipuris. But he is concerned about some of the methods used.

“I am really happy that people love bodybuilding in Manipur. But I don’t want them to build muscles by doping, taking steroids and other illegal drugs. Because even if you win a medal, how long can your body take the ill effects of the drugs? So the best way is building the body naturally, without drugs,” he told The Telegraph.

During his short stay in Imphal, Meitei spoke to many young bodybuilders and campaigned to start a natural bodybuilding association in Manipur. Bodybuilders here could not say whether there were any natural bodybuilding federations or associations in India.

“Natural bodybuilding is a new thing in India. We are not aware of such a federation in India,” the founder of Imphal’s Animal Gym, R.K. Vishwajit, said.

Meitei said he always wanted to do something for Manipur where he was born and brought up.

“Although I am now a citizen of Taiwan, I represented Manipur in the Greece competition. The medal I won is for Manipur. I also want to do more for my home state. I will set up a natural bodybuilding association in Manipur,” he said.

Meitei said he had been bodybuilding for the past 25 years and felt as young as ever despite his 48 years.

“If you win a Mr World or Universe title and something happens to you because of the drugs you have taken, who will take care of your mother, wife and children?” he asked.