Assam-born sprint sensation Hima Das is not just a genius on the track but she has got talent in other fields too – she plays the traditional instruments of Assam like a pro and with elan! She was recently seen playing the instrument at her house at Kandhulimari Village (Dhing) in Central Assam’s Nagaon district.
She may have touched international fame, but this vivacious athlete is firmly entrenched to her roots – a girl who never forgets to drape the Axomiya gamocha around her neck. Hima Das trained in the lush green rice fields of Dhing and then touched dizzying heights of success at Tampere in Finland when she became the only Indian athlete to have won gold at an international event – at the IAAF World Under-20 Athletics Championships.
Hima always dreamt big – she would often tell her father Ranjit Das when she was a child that one day she would fly in an airplane and visit foreign lands. Today, she is running in tracks across the world. When Hima Das came back to Assam recently to a red-carpet and rousing welcome, she walked out of the airport flanked by ‘Birangona’ – 25 Assam Police special women commandos. For a few seconds, she broke away from them to hug two women she spotted in the crowd — one neighbour and another family friend — who had travelled from Dhing to Guwahati to see her. So down to earth is this sporting sensation.
While Hima was being felicitated at various events in Guwahati recently, Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that Hima had “done enough and there was no pressure on her” (read to win more medals).
But, the sprint queen knows one fact very well as she says – “Everyone is talking about a medal at the Olympics. But what we should remember is that even a small injury can ruin a career in athletics. Today you’re felicitating me. But if something happens to me tomorrow, then I will be over. That is the precise reason why I chase time (and not medals). So that I keep bettering my record. And even if — God forbid — I do stop running, at least the athlete who follows will be inspired to break my record.”