Indian Guns Salute Abhinav Bindra – India’s Pride at Beijing 2008
Indian Guns Salute Abhinav Bindra – India’s Pride at Beijing 2008
© Capt Suresh Sharma. All Rights Reserved

I do not remember the exact year, but few years ago I met the Bindras at their residence at Chandigarh, as a photojournalist friend was doing a story on Abhinav Bindra. I saw Abhinav and his world class shooting infrastructure (self funded, I think) at home. We exchanged no words and no greetings. He was so quiet and calm that for a moment I thought its his imperious nature, as his success has hit his head. But at the same time, after having seen his infrastructure and his devotion, I was murmuring to myself that if there is ever a hope of any magical Gold at any Olympics in near future then its Abhinav Bindra. After that he did get laurels at the world events, but Olympics medal evaded him at the Athens in 2004. I was quite disappointed, as he and millions of Indians were.

This morning, when a friend from Chandigarh, Nitin Badhwar, who is working at Dubai, told me via chat that India wins first Gold in shooting, I thought it was Lt Col Rathore who must have done the proud. Next message, I was told its Bindra who did it. I rushed to switch on TV set to see the news and I was overwhelmed when I saw Live ceremony of Bindra coming on the prestigious podium to get his Gold. My eyes swelled with pride like many other billion Indian eyes, when we all saw Abhinav climbing up the podium and the Tricolour racing up the flag mast and our national anthem being sung. I can imagine the joy the winner must be getting, it’s the hard work, as they say “to be a winner one has to die many times while living”. And when you get your goal, the joy has no bounds and all the pains of toil and labour is forgotten. The Chinese shooter who won Silver was overwhelmed by the same joy and was struggling to hold his eyes while he raised his medal in air and all the Chinese jumped with joy and the stadium was full of Chinese joyous screams, he could not hold for long and his eyes did tell everyone that he is overjoyed. I wish I could be there to join the Indian cheers, while Bindra climbed the podium as very calm and quiet, while placed our Tricolour on the mast up.

All these years, he has worked single mindedly, focused, all energy concentrated only on one goal – The Olympic Gold ! I think its his nature of being calm and quite, which was mistook as arrogance by me. He belongs to a very affluent Punjabi family and I thought that must have spoilt him. But that helped him make the Gold at Beijing. He has no ambition to earn wealth through the Golds, he is passionate about his goal and that is why he has done it at Beijing.

Today, I had to make an effort to find some happiness and smile on his face when he was on the podium with his Gold. He made no special gestures or expressions, he was same calm and quiet.

Abhinav’s Gold is the result of his own devotion, his familie’s hard work and his coach. Everyone of them has chipped in equally, otherwise it wouldn’t have been possible. He worked like a saint for 12 years to get this Gold. Honestly, we as a country did nothing to support him, now we are there to share the pride.

While he was shooting, he was trailing at sixth position, but he remained calm and focused, it was his last shot which got him the Gold.

May he win many more laurels in future Olympics !!!

We all honour him with `gun salute’ for making us proud !!!

Uploaded by Captain Suresh on 12 Aug 08, 2.43PM IST.

This is a repost of the original article by Capt. Suresh on Flickr.com

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