Kabaddi player Vindhyavasini receives her offer letter from Hemant Soren during the government’s first anniversary celebrations in Ranchi on Sunday. (Prashant Mitra)
Year-old performance lacklustre, anniversary party sparkling.
Chief minister Hemant Soren celebrated completing one year in office on Sunday by handing over jobs of sub-inspectors in state police to three sporting champions, Vindhyavasini Kumari, Bigan Soy and Mangal Singh Champia at the Aryabhatta Auditorium near Ranchi College in Morabadi.
Vindhyavasani (24), Bokaro-based kabaddi player and part of Team India that won gold at the maiden kabaddi world cup in 2012, and Bigan (21), from Bandgaon in Chaibasa, the goalie who helped the country win bronze against England at hockey junior world cup in 2013, will don police uniforms. So will Jamshedpur’s Mangal (31), Olympian in Beijing in 2008 and bronze medal winner in Asian Games, Doha, in 2006.
It is a hat-trick that does Hemant and his JMM-Congress-RJD coalition — often left in tatters over differences of opinion — proud.
Rivals BJP, on a Lok Sabha mandate high, would do well to remember that Hemant did what his predecessor Arjun Munda couldn’t or didn’t.
Battling poverty, Vindhyavasani, a graduate, had knocked all doors possible for years for a government job and promised cash prizes, staging protests and threatening to return her gold medal. She was searching for private jobs when Hemant stepped in.
Clad in her kabaddi World Cup blazer, Vindhyavasani was elated though clueless about the Rs 10 cash award promised to her in the past.
“A government job is a government job. After losing my father two years ago, our family’s financial condition worsened. My mother hasn’t been keeping well. Being the eldest of three siblings, the onus was on me to take the lead in helping the family,” she said.
“My sisters Amrita and Hemlata are also kabaddi players. We need basic nutrition,” the champ, eyeing the senior nationals scheduled in Bangalore in September, said. “My job will help all of us.”
Jharkhand iron lass and goalie Bigan, who became a hockey sensation after helping India clinch the maiden world cup bronze in Germany last August, was also thrilled.
“I come from a farmer’s family. I desperately needed a job after the railways denied me one after promising to induct me last year. I am finally happy I have some sort of security now in order to pursue my game and look after my poor parents,” Bigan said.
She added she couldn’t continue her camp in Patiala due to her ongoing second-year BA exams. “I feel sad I couldn’t make it to senior national team for Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, but I have set my sights on Asian Games this September,” she said, adding her exams would be over by Tuesday.
Mangal couldn’t make it due to personal reasons.
Sports director Dadan Choubey said of the 13 applications that came for direct recruitment based on the state’s ads last week, the trio were selected in first phase. “It was symbolic. The rest of applicants had improper paper work but we haven’t rejected them,” said he.
Star archer Deepika Kumari hasn’t applied. It is likely that she doesn’t need a job as she is with Tata Steel in a managerial position. “I don’t know why she hasn’t applied. The state would have felt proud inducting her,” Choubey said.