Just like the Phogat sisters, Navjot's father, who is a farmer by profession, had been the biggest source of support throughout her life.
Indian women sportspersons are giving tough competition or in some cases are outshining their male counterparts when it comes to winning medals at international events. Especially in wrestling, we have seen a number of women – Geeta Phogat, Babita Phogat and Sakshi Malik – who have made the country proud. All of these women have one thing in common – they hailed from strongly patriarchal societies but supported and encouraged by their parents. Another emerging name in this league is Navjot Kaur – the 28-year-old wrestler from Punjab who has created history by becoming the first Indian woman grappler to win a Gold in Senior Asian Championships at Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. The 28-year-old from Punjab’s Tarn Taran district bagged the Gold medal after crushing Japan’s Miya Imai 9-1 in the final bout of the women’s 65kg freestyle category.
News reports have highlighted that just like the Phogat sisters, Navjot’s father, who is a farmer by profession, had been the biggest source of support throughout her life. So much so, that he not only provided moral support but also fulfilled her daughter’s financial needs even if he had to take loans. A report in Times Of India says that Navjot’s father has taken a number of loans and is reportedly under a debt of Rs 13 Lakhs.
In 2014, Navjot suffered a severe waist injury, which forced the athlete out of the game for almost two years. Navjot required to go through a long rehabilitation process before she could get back to winning form. The TOI report quoted Navjot’s sister Navjeet Kaur as saying that the athlete’s father had borrowed money to fund the entire expense of the treatment.
Speaking to PTI over the phone, Navjeet said the whole family was ecstatic over the historic achievement of Navjot in wrestling. The lady wrestler grew up in village Baghria in Tarn Taran district of Punjab. “We were praying for her victory and winning the gold medal. We were quite nervous about her final match against Miya as Japanese contenders were known to be tough challengers,” said Navjeet, who herself had been a wrestler.
Earlier, Navjot had won a silver at the Asian Championships in 2013 and a bronze in 2014 Commonwealth Games in 67kg category.