Abhishek Gogoi, the national record-holder para-cyclist had qualified for the Special Olympics World Summer Games, which would be held in the month of March next year in Abu Dhabi.
This 17-year-old achiever is struggling to raise funds for buying a bicycle and other necessary equipment for competing in the Special Olympic Games. He had qualified for the games using borrowed cycles earlier this year. Abhishek had secured the first position in both the 5-kilometre time trial and 10-kilometre time trial events at the Cycling NCC-cum-National Championship, which was held in the month of January this year, at Jharkhand.
What earned this young achiever who was born with cerebral palsy, a spot at the 2019 Games was his 10-km timing of 19 minutes and 21 seconds, which is the 12th fastest in the world in the Special Olympics category.
He lost his father to cancer a few years ago. Owing to economic and financial instability, this young sports star practices on borrowed cycles. He has also taken part in major competitions using such borrowed cycles.
An online campaign through Ketto was started by Arshel Akhter, an avid cyclist based in Guwahati, to gather a sum of Rs 1.5 lakh to buy a cycle and other necessary items for Abhishek’s participation in the Special Olympics.
Mr. Akhter told the Times of India on Tuesday, “Abhishek is a wonderful kid with lot of potential to do well in sports. But unfortunately, his family’s financial condition is not good enough to afford all the necessary equipment. Now if we can gather some money, it will be helpful for him. We can buy a good cycle for him before he goes to attend the national training camp in Rajasthan from June 19 for the Special Olympics.”
The campaign, which has already got some sound support from donors, was started on the 13th of May and will go on upto the 27th of May.
Bornali Nath Gogoi, Abhishek’s mother, told the press that she is the sole bread earner in the family and does not have the required resources to fund her son’s dream with what is left after providing for him and his younger sister. She told the press, “Since childhood, he liked to ride bicycles. He has hurt himself by falling off cycles many times. And that is how he learnt. If we get some support, my son’s dream can be fulfilled.”
Apart from cycling, Abhishek also plays cricket and this shows his undying spirit for life and its buoyancy. This young champion told the press with complete optimism that he will try his best to bring an Olympic medal if he is given a cycle.