A national-level woman shooter who won several championship while representing Gujarat, home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, now sells noodles on the roadside in Vadodara to earn a living for her family.
The 21-year-old, Pushpa Gupta, started her Chinese-food eatery some one and a half years ago when the National Cadet Corps (NCC) stopped supporting her financially to chase her dream as a shooter. It was in 2013 that she had joined the NCC and discovered her interest in shooting.
"I had joined college in 2013 and it was there that I discovered I have skills in shooting. I joined the National Cadet Corps (NCC) and it supported me financially. I represented Gujarat in the sport as well. Then I started becoming interested in the sport," Pushpa told ANI.
However, when her course at NCC ended, the financial aid stopped and her father Dinesh Kumar Gupta advised her against pursuing her dream as it was very expensive. Her father asked her to start a business for livelihood. On her father's advice, she started a Chinese food stall on a lorry where she hangs her medals as well.
She said the medals help attract customers' attention; she, too, wants them to know about her achievements.
"After support from the NCC ended, my father told me to discontinue the sport and start some business in order to earn a living. Since then, we have been selling noodles on this lorry and now it has over been one year," she said.
Meanwhile, her father Dinesh expressed disappointment at Modi's promises on women's empowerment, saying the promises are visible on televisions and newspapers only. He said he would like to see his daughter pursue her dreams.
"Ever since Modi ji has become prime minister, a huge stress is being put on women's empowerment. But we have not received any benefit from it as of now. It is just there on the televisions and the newspapers," Dinesh told ANI.
"Currently, we have a woman MP in the area we are living in. The chief minister of the state is also a woman. If we would have received anything from the sports authority or from the government, she (Pushpa) would not be selling noodles on the streets and would have brought honour to the nation in the field of sports," he added.
National level shooter Pushpa Gupta turns teary eyed, says "Its been one & a half year,have not even seen the rifle" pic.twitter.com/YB9lSZLUjy
— ANI (@ANI_news) December 6, 2015