Kumaon’s Boxer Turned Cop Vinita Is Winning Hearts by Going Beyond Duty’s Call
Every morning Constable Vinita Mahar Negi steps out of her house with a heavy heart and a determined spirit. While Vinita, who is now posted in Himalayan town Pithoragarh of the Kumaon region, feels disheartened that she has to keep her four-year-old son at a distance, she is thankful he is safe this way as she continues to serve the public even more in these stressful times. In a conversation with SheThePeople, Constable Vinita Negi talks about her intense duty, how she intends to keep her child safe with social distancing, why she believes helping the elderly is vital and why the public must be careful as the cases surge day after day.
Serving at the busiest area in town
As a frontline Corona warrior, Vinita is currently posted at KMOU station in Pithoragarh district. Being one of the busiest, most populated area, it’s a huge challenge to keep a constant, thorough check here. Vinita fulfilled her childhood dream of serving the nation in 2010 when she entered the police force.
As the COVID-19 cases are quickly rising in the hills, and lockdown restrictions easing alongside, it’s become a task for the police force to manage the public. “Earlier, this area was in the green zone but the last two weeks got us into the orange zone. Since I am posted at KMOU station and people’s movements are increasing, I’m extra vigilant on duty,” she shares.
How professional boxing taught her discipline
A state and national gold medalist, Vinita was approximately eight when she started showing interest in distinctive sports. However, it was boxing which gave her a purpose and kick-started her dream and later helped her work towards entering the force.
I owe everything to the sport, it taught me the skill, the discipline, strength and will power.
Vinita, whose husband also serves in the police force, recalls how once her son wouldn’t let go of her noticing she has been spending very little time with him. “Earlier we were on an eight-hour duty, now it crosses about twelve hours with a tight situation. So, it’s a challenge to manage home but that’s fine, it’s part of our being.”
It’s heart-wrenching because I cannot stay close to my child these days as the risk rises. Having said that, it’s for the greater good and I derive the strength to get past it with my role as a public servant.
Reaching out to the vulnerable while patrolling
She believes it’s the elderly who are suffering in more ways and we must help them with all heart. Apart from serving her hours, she serves beyond and patrols the area to see if the vulnerable ones require anything. She makes it a point to notice the elderly who are out and arranges safe conveyance for them to get home. “I try to reach out to as many as I can, especially those who are living alone.”
As a public servant, I believe we need to aid the vulnerable at all times, as much as we can.
“We are all trying to help the needy with lodging and food services because no help is ever enough considering the population and distant reach in our regions, the public has also been helpful.” Another aspect she stresses is to cater to the stray animals which are struggling to survive in these days. “We’re taking measures to keep the animals safe and see to all shelters so they don’t suffer.”
As a police officer, I don’t think my duty is only limited to the hours or the area I serve.
Inspiring young girls in the region
Vinita says if she could make it this far, anyone can. “As I get this platform today, I want to tell all the young girls and women to always dream. Dream big and make it happen. Be stubborn with what you want to achieve and never back down. Independence is what will make you your best self. ”
Her appeal to the public
“Please step out of your home only when absolutely necessary. If the situation in the hills gets worse, the entire region will fall apart considering the lack of facilities and turbulent weather conditions,” pleads Vinita.