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Media frenzy over Mirabai Chanu — Can we expect this every day for Indian athletes?
Mirabai Chanu, the Tokyo Olympics silver medallist arrives in India today, and she was caught over by a media frenzy.
Mirabai Chanu doesn't remain on the headlines of newspapers on most days of months. Nor does her name trend on social media with numerous posts over the years.
It probably takes only an event like the Olympics, which comes in four years, for an Indian athlete like Mirabai to be recognised. At least the events that followed indicated so.
India's only medal winner at Tokyo Olympics, Mirabai Chanu, who won a silver in weightlifting on Saturday, touched down in Delhi late in the afternoon on Monday. What followed was a frenzy of media persons attempting to get a shot of the Manipuri and probably churn out some quotes for interview.
Wading the covid-related regulations of social distancing journalists, try to check past the heavy security deployed for the 26-year-old for a piece of tomorrow's headlines. After all, the occasion calls for such attention in a country that is deprived of a reputable number of Olympic medals.
A video that surfaced on social media showed the crowd where even Chanu couldn't be seen clearly. When was the last time such a thing happened? Probably when PV Sindhu and Sakshi Malik had returned from the Rio Games in 2016.
But why it takes only the Olympics to recognise these players from the lesser-followed sports? Mirabai had won a World Championships gold medal in 2017 in the women's 48kg weight category, followed by a gold medal in the 2018 Commonwealth Games. However, her achievements back then were barely known by media persons.
Can we expect from now onwards, these athletes get cherished and supported by media and fans every time they go out and play?