It’s been a year since Swapna Barman became India’s first ever heptathlete to win a gold medal at the Asian Games in Indonesia in 2018. To felicitate her win, the West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee promised her a piece of land. On returning she was looking forward to the promised land but all she got was a rented house for which she has to pay monthly rent of Rs 4000 out of her own pocket. On Thursday, Barman claimed that she is yet to hear from the government on the matter.

“We have made so many requests but the officials have told us that the finance committee has rejected the proposal of land. I want to know whether the Chief Minister is aware that I’ve been denied land despite her promise,” the gifted athlete said, Indian Express reported.

Key Takeaways:

  • Swapna Barman became India’s first ever heptathlete to win a gold medal at the Asian Games in in Indonesia last year.
  • After her big win, she was promised a piece of land by the West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee but she has only got a rented house for which she has to pay a monthly rent of Rs 4000 out of her own pocket.
  • Barman achieved the height with six-toed (on each foot) legs. Her family in Jalpaiguri lives in financial crisis. 

“I’ve just got Rs 10 lakh and a rented house for which I’m paying rent of Rs 4000 on my own. It’s really frustrating and I feel ignored,” she rued. She also gave an example of 2002 Asian Games silver medallist Soma Biswas who was provided land by the government at that time. “But no one is talking in favour of me. I don’t know what has happened to the promise,” Swapna, who is in rehab for her back injury as well as a meniscus tear of the knee, said.

“I’ve just got Rs 10 lakh and a rented house for which I’m paying rent of Rs 4000 on my own. It’s really frustrating and I feel ignored,”

21-year-old Barman is the first-ever gold medallist in the women’s heptathlon in Asian Games 2018. Her personal best record is of 6026 points, and she is eyeing to improve it to 6420 points to reach the Olympic qualifying mark. With time running out for Tokyo 2020, Swapna said, “It’s tough but I’m confident. I will do my best next year to raise the points.”

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Talking about her exit from the Target Olympic Podium scheme and how it’s more difficult now, she claimed, “It would have been nice to be there in TOPS. But I don’t have any regrets… My focus is on ensuring that I’m in the best possible shape ahead of Tokyo Olympics.”

The gold medallist has given India a purpose to love an underrated sport. The Heptathlon is a mix of seven events — 100m, High Jump, 200m, Shot Put, Javelin Throw, Long Jump, and 800m. This is the first ever gold medal for India in Heptathlon at Asiad and the six-toed (on each foot) girl has done it!

The gold medallist has given India a purpose to love an underrated sport. The Heptathlon is a mix of seven events — 100m, High Jump, 200m, Shot Put, Javelin Throw, Long Jump, and 800m. This is the first ever gold medal for India in Heptathlon at Asiad and the six-toed (on each foot) girl has done it! She is the daughter of Panchanan Barman — a rickshaw-puller — who is bedridden for the past couple of years. Her mother, Basana Devi, works as a domestic help.

Feature Image Credit: Sportstarlive

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