Have you seen Aamir Khan starrer ‘Dangal’? If yes, then you know, that girls can wrestle as good as boys. So, it is a given that the sport of wrestling should not be restricted just to boys, which it had been till recently. However, there are still many akharas (arenas) in the country which do not allow girls in their ring. Breaking this stereotype is the Tulsidas Akhara, situated on the banks of river Ganga, in Varanasi, which has allowed girls to wrestle and practice wrestling in their arena, as per a report by Times of India. The report further says that the akhara, that is managed by the Sankat Mochan temple trust, accorded approval to girls to use the arena from August 15, which is also the Independence day of the country and it will see female wrestlers fighting from Diwali, this year.
Vishwambar Nath Mishra, the ‘mahant’ of Sankant Mochan feels that the decision will help empower women in the city. Mishra told TOI, “People are surprised when they learn that I am a professor at IIT as well as the Mahant of this temple. I believe I can contribute to society in both ways. So why not take a decision that’s in keeping with gender equality and restores the faith of people in the divine?” said mahant Mishra, who teaches electronics at IIT BHU.
Earlier, we have seen female wrestlers like Sakshi Malik and Geeta Phogat bringing laurels for our country, so, this might be a small step but it may surely prove to be a giant leap for the future of women wrestling in India.