Jyoti Kumari : The Girl With Commendable Legs

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Jyoti Kumari is the 15-year-old girl whose story has gone viral on social media. It happened after her commendable peddling stretch surfaced. She cycled 1,200 km from Gurugram to Bihar, over eight days with her ailing father in tow. Both father and daughter duo had feared that they would soon be told to vacate their lodging by their landlord in Gurugram; a tensed Jyoti had then suggested that they should return home. However, when her father had pointed out that their chances of finding any trains or buses were bleak and moreover, his injury would not allow him to walk; it is then that she took a tough decision to cycle back home, regardless of how long it might take.

This gallant story of Jyoti has now reached the White House in the USA as well. Ivanka Trump, President Donald Trump’s daughter, had also tweeted about the same, complimenting the Jyoti. 

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Not only that, but her saga also caught the attention of the Cycling Federation of India. Onkar Singh, Chairman of the Cycling Federation of India on Thursday, told PTI that if Kumari, an 8th grader, clears the trial, then she will be selected as a trainee at the National Cycling Academy at the Indira Gandhi Stadium in Delhi. He said that they had contacted her and will be called to Delhi as soon as the lockdown is lifted. The authorities state that they will be bearing all the expenses of her travel, lodging, and others. And further, if she requires that someone from her house accompanies her, that will also be allowed. Currently, they are coordinating with their Bihar state unit on how she can be brought to Delhi for the trials. 

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 When asked about the justification behind the trial being offered to the girl, Onkar Singh points out that there is something special in her; it is next to impossible to cycle down more than 1200 km. She has to satisfy seven or eight parameters on the computerized cycle at the academy to get selected. After that, she will join the other trainees for further training. 

Furthermore, the recent reports say that the famous IIT-JEE coaching institute, founder and mathematician Anand Kumar of Super 30, has also offered to train Jyoti Kumari. He took to his Facebook page and stated that his brother had met Jyoti’s family, and added that she was welcome to join the Super 30 family. He also promised to arrange for all the expenses for her engineering studies.

Apart from these offers, other offers were also put forward by some ministers – 

Bihar’s former chief minister Rabri Devi and Tejashwi Yadav, had spoken to the girl’s family on 24th May through a video call. Rabri Devi has also offered to provide financing for Jyoti’s education, her wedding and promised to provide a job to the teen’s father.

Chirag Paswan, MP from Lok Janshakti Party has also offered to sponsor her education.

Ashwini Kumar Chaubey, Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare has also stated that he is considering to make Jyoti the “health ambassador” of India.

Ram Vilas Paswan, Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, called Jyoti a “modern Shravan Kumar” and appealed to Kiren Rijiju, Union Sports Minister, to provide scholarship and training to her.

Responding to the tweet, Rijiju said Jyoti will be chosen as a trainee in Delhi’s National Cycling Academy after her trials with the Cycling Federation of India.

Ravi Shankar Prasad, Law and Justice Minister also appealed to Kiren Rijiju to give full support to the girl.

However, she turned down the offer. Earlier, she had to give up on her education because of her family situation. It forced her to take up odd jobs, such as domestic help. However, now she wishes to complete her matriculation.  She said that she is physically exhausted after the journey.

Former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has also offered Rs 1 lakh to Jyoti for her remarkable ‘feet.’

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Apoorva Iyer
Apoorva Iyer is a student of B.A Political Science (Hons.) at Deshbandhu College, Delhi University.

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