The coach calls him ‘Olympic material’. When focusing on the target with his bow gripped, arrow stretched, he looks towards his future. This is all about Gora Ho, India’s young archer who won gold for the nation.
17-year-old Gora Ho hails from a tribal belt in Jharkhand and was part of the Indian team of archers at the Asia Cup stage 1 archery meet held in Bangkok. The trio Gora Ho, Akash Malik and Gaurav Lambe secured the gold medal for India scoring 27-26.
Gora’s inspiring story
Gora’s story is an inspiration for many Indian youngsters. Life was not merciful to him. He hails from a financially backward family and lost his mother in 2016. His 50-year-old father has been confined to bed following a paralytic attack. The circumstances never made Gora give up his passion. In fact, he made his family and nation proud.
Gora is the youngest of the four siblings and is looked after by his elder brothers. In the last six years, He won 100 medals in sub-junior and junior events at the state level and national level tournaments. He bagged 3 gold medals during the 2014 National School Games held in Ranchi and bagged 10 medals at the Jharkhand Archery Championships. He also finished 17th in the junior individual round with a score of 648, a promising beginning for an international archer debut.
“Even as a little boy, he showed a remarkable talent for archery. He has the capacity of making the country proud in more international competitions. He needs proper guidance,” told Prem Shankar, Gora’s brother to The Times of India.
Gora began his training at the Arjuna Academy in Kharswan and he was spotted by coach B Srinivas Rao. Rao moved him to the Dugni Academy in Seraikela. “This boy is Olympic material. His natural talent needs to be honed through focused training under the guidance of a recognized foreign coach,” Rao told The Times of India.
“Support from my teammates and hard work helped me perform well at my first tournament,” Gora was quoted by The Times of India. “I always believed that one day I will win gold. I was a bit nervous but believed in my abilities,” he told The Telegraph.
The 17-year-old is now dreaming big and practising to participate in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The state government identified his talent and presented him with state-of-the-art equipment including a bow which costs Rs 2.70 lakh.
Have you ever spotted a speeding car without a care for the traffic signal? Ever spotted a person rushing to the other side of the road when the traffic light is green? Ever seen bikers use pavements as roads to save a few minutes? Ever seen cars change lanes on highways or rush hour traffic on a whim? Well, so have thousands of other Indians.
Road safety in India is a serious concern. For a country that boasts the second largest road network in the world, it is inarguable that we need to pay more attention to our safety on roads – a place where we step out every day, spend a handsome amount of our time.
The government has come up with several regulations on road safety, but is this enough? Not if awareness around the topic is still lacking.
The intention behind the initiative is to bring together lawmakers, local authorities, traffic police and citizens under one umbrella.
The cities will be rated on parameters such as Pedestrian Rights, Road Lighting and Maintenance, Motor Laws and Traffic Control, Emergency Services, Road Cleanliness, Connectivity, Road Transport Infrastructure, Heavy Vehicle Traffic Management, Road Safety, Differently abled friendly, Road Quality and Road Safety For Children.
Here are the ten cities that were chosen for Road Safety Index 2018 and the reasons that make their roads safe or unsafe:
Mumbai has facilities for the differently-abled like reservations in public transports, special train compartments, concessions on fares, etc. The city that never sleeps scored the best when it comes to citizens’ participation in making the city accepting and warm toward the differently-abled. It won the category ‘Differently-Abled Friendly’.
However, there are areas of improvement – illegal hawkers, pavements and footpaths need to be fixed or reconstructed.
Anyone who hails from the capital of West Bengal knows about its recreational parks and brightly lit streets. Its traffic police deserve special mention for redirecting rush traffic every day as Kolkata roads are narrow and many are one-way streets.
During Durga Puja, the city tries to make Pandals differently-abled friendly by installing ramps.
It won the categories – ‘Road Lighting & Maintenance’ and ‘Road Safety For Children’.
But the City of Joy needs to work more on giving its residents #HappyRoads. Issues of waterlogging and numerous street hawkers, roadside vendors in busy areas need to be solved.
There’s no one who’s been to Delhi and not praised its excellent connectivity. Delhi prides itself for broad roads, top-notch metros, pavements and foot over bridges. The national capital surely serves as an example for cities across India when it comes to road connectivity hence, it won the categories ‘Connectivity’ and ‘Road Quality’ in the Road Safety Index.
While Delhi has made many of its public places differently-abled friendly, the areas that need improvement are long hours in traffic, fixing of roads that pose a hindrance to daily commute and rash driving by bikers.
The city boasts well-marked zebra crossings, adequate footpaths for pedestrians, underground SMART dustbins, reduced encroachments. Raipur fares well in almost all parameters of road safety. It won the category of ‘Road Safety’ and ‘Pedestrian Rights’.
However, the city could do better with stricter fines for traffic violators and awareness about road safety and garbage disposal.
Other cities can take inspiration from Chennai on how to ensure good road safety. The city has wide, well-connected roads that are lit properly. It also boasts rigorous night patrolling where traffic rules violators are fined. One of the best initiatives taken by Chennai is the separate parking space on city roads that prevent traffic from accumulating. It came out on top in the category ‘Motor Laws & Traffic Control’.
Areas where Chennai needs to improve are street lighting and cleanliness.
Indore is one of the few cities that has used plastic waste for construction of roads and covered garbage disposals, which explains why the city won the ‘Road Cleanliness’ category. Indore also has adequate zebra crossings, visual signals, street lights, footpaths.
But areas where the city needs improvement are – strict action against traffic violators, public spaces more differently-abled friendly.
There is a lot to learn from the road safety measures implemented by Ahmedabad – sound medical facilities, separate lanes for local buses, special cab service for differently-abled, wide roads. Ahmedabad won in the category ‘Emergency Services’, ‘Road Transport Infrastructure’ and ‘Heavy Vehicle Traffic Management’.
If the Heritage City improves road safety awareness among citizens, it’s bound to fare even better. Better street lighting and lesser encroachments will work in favour of Ahmedabad.
The other cities shortlisted were Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad but they didn’t win any category.
Maruti Suzuki’s initiative to rank cities will encourage citizens and administration to do better and emerge on top.
The Logical Indian community wholeheartedly appreciates the various initiatives undertaken by Maruti-Suzuki in this direction. Not only the government but we, as citizens of this country, should also pledge to make our roads safe. One of the first steps towards this is that we understand our duties.
We hope the authorities take a note while we pledge to do our own bit towards happier, safer Indian roads.
For more information about the Maruti Suzuki’s initiative and the Road Safety Indexclick here.