While the whole country is celebrating 23-year-old boxer Lovlina Borgohain for assuring an Olympic medal for India, many don’t know how her parents were shamed for having no sons. Recalling her initial days, Lovlina told Indian Express after being honoured with the Arjuna Award last year:
“Remember how in the village they would often pity my parents, with no sons and three daughters. My mother would always tell us to do something to prove the critics wrong, and we did. Both my sisters have jobs in the Central Industrial Security Force and Border Security Force, and I am a boxer,”
Lovlina Borgohain, the first woman from Assam to qualify for the Olympics, has become the second Indian to win a medal at the Tokyo Olympics (after Mirabai Chanu). She has ensured at least a bronze medal by winning against Nien-Chin Chen of Chinese Taipei in the quarterfinals of the 69 kg women’s welterweight boxing. (Also Read: From Carrying Firewood As Child To Winning Olympic Silver, Mirabai Chanu Is The Hero We Need)
Here’s Lovlina’s inspiring story of starting from a small village in Assam to Olympics!
Lovlina was born to Mamoni and Tiken Borhohain, a small-time businessman. When she was in Class 5, her dad showed her a newspaper clipping of the legendary Muhammad Ali. This clipping changed her life and inspired her to do boxing!
During high school, her performance in boxing trials impressed Padum Boro (a coach from Guwahati). After watching her perform, Padum Boro asked if the talented young girl would like to go to Guwahati to train under the Sports Authority of India. Post which, there was no looking back.
In 2018, Lovlina bagged bronze at the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships. This laid the foundation of her selection in the Indian women’s boxing team for the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Disappointed by the loss at CWG 2018, Lovlina started focusing on re-building her psychological strength. She joined meditation classes while fine-tuning her counter-attack technique. And, finally her efforts paid off in 2019, when she won another bronze medal at the AIBA Women’s World Boxing Championships. This win made her World No. 3 in the 69 kg category.
All her achievements helped her in coming closer to her dream of representing India at the Tokyo Olympics. She finally scored her spot at the Olympics in early 2020, after defeating Uzbekistan’s Maftunakhon Melieva in the quarterfinals of the Asian Olympic qualifiers.
After her qualification, Lovlina told Times of India:
“My father always wanted me to go to the Olympics, it’s a dream come true for him. When I called them, they all started crying. But I am not content with only an Olympic berth. I want to win gold,”
2,000-odd residents of her village are waiting for Lovlina to return with a medal from Tokyo. Because, this could mean the arrival of basic facilities and infrastructure to the village, which is still connected with the rest of the world via a muddy track.
After watching how the fate of villages of Hima Das and Mary Kom changed after their wins, the villagers are highly hopeful about their future. It is quite hypocrital of the society that shamed Lovlina’s parents for having no son, now eagerly waiting for her win! (Also Read: Don’t Worry About Kids: How Mary Kom’s Husband Fought For His Wife’s Dreams) (Also Read:From Daughter Of Rice Farmers To World Champion, Hima Das’ Story Of True Courage)
At IFORHER, we wish luck to Lovlina and hope the society will stop shaming parents for having daughters. Dear society, our daughters deserve the same respect as that of our sons! Because respect knows no gender! (Also Read: Dear Society, Stop Treating Mothers Of Daughters As ‘Bechari’; They Are The Strongest)