Although the Indian women’s hockey team has set a new milestone for the country at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, by finishing fourth, the social principles in the case of the best player are overflowing.
While India will be happy when its women beat a strong Australian team in the quarterfinals to book tickets for the semi-finals, the vision of Haridwar, the Roshnabad home of Qatar, will soon be different.
The oldest pioneer of the Indian team, having put more than 240 games under his belt, at the age of 29 he was involved in many battles of caste and gender, believing that people would fully recognize him as a player who makes a difference on the field.
The exploitation of this ‘untouchable’ and ‘Dalit’ woman, one of the lowest social strata in the country, was the first Indian to score a hat-trick against South Africa and the last goal of the match for the bronze medal in Great Britain, where they failed to suppress caste insults.
This ancient form of social division was legally abolished in the Indian Constitution in 1950 to prevent discrimination and abuse of the lower strata of society, but it still operates in its course.
After the defeat to Argentina in the semi-finals, many upper caste men surrounded Vandana’s house, exploding firecrackers and shouting that the Indian team could not win, and they started making fun and dancing because they were ‘too many Dalits’.
In India, caste differences are rooted in practically all fields and despite the end of ‘untouchability’ in the 1950s, the game system has not escaped them in a country that is still in trouble seven decades later.
If those who belong to the Dalit section of the society have a destructive life, it is a double margin for Dalit women.
The Indian sport attracts athletes from marginalized and oppressed backgrounds and every Olympic season the country raises the tricolor flag in favor of athletes who fight against more intense battles outside the sport than they do within themselves.
msm / abm
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