With their last dime of savings, the family of an international level athlete in Nagpur was left with no choice but to queue at the local food distribution centre to survive the lockdown.
Twenty-five-year-old Jyoti Chauhan is a well known sports personality in her locality Isasani, which is 14km away from Nagpur. Defying poverty, she had risen to become an international with many medals in her kitty. Her family of five resides in the small slum pocket of Panchsheel Nagar. Her father Jungbahadur works as a mason and her mother Sushila is a homemaker. “We don’t have any income because of the lockdown. Moreover, there are no sports events in which I could participate. Despite my qualifications, I am unable to get a government job through the sports quota,” she said.
We don’t have any income because of the lockdown. Moreover, there are no sports events in which I could participate. Despite my qualifications, I am unable to get a government job through the sports quota.Jyoti Chauhan
Left with no money and food grains, they were forced to stand in the queue at the food distribution centre run by a local legislator Sameer Meghe. “I felt ashamed to stand in the queue. My mother and sister went for the last two weeks of April,” Joyti said. When this news was reported in the local media, it shocked everyone. A social organisation sent ration for the family.
Jyoti has been undergoing training at the Sports Authority of India centre at Bhopal. She supports her family through the cash prizes won by her. “I have won gold and silver prizes in various types of running competitions at the national and International level. I represented India in the World University Games in Italy in July 2019. I am champion in the steeplechase type of running. I was selected in the Central Railway under the sports quota. Due to the lockdown, the orders were not issued. I also appeared for the CISF selection process, but the result has not yet been announced. I am struggling to get a job despite having talent. It was painful to send my family members to get food from the food distribution centers,” Jyoti told FPJ.