Those of us who prefer spending the weekend in the company of a hardbound book rather than in the movie hall, may spend their Christmas reading Haryanavi wrestler Mahavir Phogat’s biopic. No, we are not talking about Nitesh Tiwari’s film Dangal but the book based on the life of Phogat that will be released days before Aaamir Khan’s Dangal hits the screens on 23 December.
The Times of India reports that a book titled Akhada: The Authorized Biography of Mahavir Singh Phogat will be unveiled in mid-December. Sports writer Saurabh Duggal has chronicled the life of Phogat in the book, which will be published by Hachette India.
Phogat is an accomplished wrestler who has been awarded the Dronacharya Award by the Indian Government. After he missed the chance of winning a gold medal, Phogat trained his daughters in the male-dominated hinterlands of Haryana and transformed them into wrestlers.
His daughter Geeta Phogat became the first Indian woman wrestler to qualify for the Olympics and the first ever Indian gold medalist in the 55 kg freestyle category at the 2010 Commonwealth Games.
This year, the performance of female athletes brought laurels to India in the Rio Olympics. Wrestler Sakshi Malik, gymnast Dipa Karmakar and badminton player PV Sindhu’s show in their respective arenas is bound to have inspired many aspiring women athletes to break free and work harder.
Phogat and everyone associated with his biopic, both in print and on celluloid.