Girls in Chennai take up the shooting sports

All shooting sports - ISSF/ IPSC/ HFT/ Sporting Clays etc.
Post Reply

Girls in Chennai take up the shooting sports

Post by mehulkamdar » Sun Sep 17, 2006 12:15 pm

Deccan Chronicle Article

City women take shooting lessons

Indian shooters are stealing the limelight in the international and national shooting circuits. And this is one sport that women are on par with men. Be it Anjali Bhagwat, Saroja Kumari or Sushma Rana, these ace shooters are bringing glory to the nation and changing the face of the sport. And now, city women are also taking to this mind game with a killer instinct. Some have taken it up not just because it is a challenging sport, but also for security.

D.V. Seetharama Rao, joint secretary general, National Rifle Association of India says, ?Historically, Tamil Nadu has been the cradle of peaceful existence where women usually led their lives indoors unlike the north where the men would be on the move and women had to guard their families. But the scenario is changing here, working late hours is not a taboo and hence women are taking up shooting as a sport and some are using it as a means of protection. Owning a small pistol makes them feel safe and secure.? Even though men still outnumber women, one can see a change. ?We have girls as young as 16 to middle-aged women. There is also Malathi David who is nearing 60 years and is still continues the sport,? adds D.V. Seetharama Rao.

Vani Vetrivel, a first year student of Ethiraj College says, ?I took up this sport when I was in class 11 because it is different and not many take it up. Shooting gives me a lot of confidence ? at least the guys in college keep their distance and don?t take me for granted. They say, ?If we mess with her we are in trouble, it?s better to play safe?. Besides it also keeps me focused while I am studying. She adds, ?In fact I am planning to own a weapon in the near future as it?s safe to have one these days.?

Says Seetharama, ?We are making all efforts to create awareness about the sport, especially among the women. But it is a costly sport and many hesitate to take it up. Hence in this regard, with the initiative of Dr Sivanthi Adityan, life president of Indian Olympic Association, we have created an Ammunition Subsidy Fund and whatever money is generated through this, is used to provide ammunition at a subsidised rate.? Playing this game involves the conquering of a wavering mind and steadying nerves countless times before pulling the trigger. And this helps the women face challenges of life better.

For Mahalakshmi Winfred, a doctor by profession, her gun was left to gather dust in a closet for about 25 years. Now she is back doing what she enjoys best. Says Mahalakshmi, ?It is a second innings for me. Shooting has always been my childhood passion.? Gita Shankar who has several national awards to her credit, says, ?I have been into this since 1968 and I can see things changing both in terms of infrastructure as well as the number of youngsters taking an interest in the sport. It?s really a good sport for women ? it?s fun, safe and rewarding. The best part is that you feel superior when others think twice before approaching you just by looking at the gun.?

Post Reply