The first Indian track athlete, Hima Das to win gold in woman's 400m in World U-20 Championships 2018, is not just an Indian anymore, her identity now requires further dissection. Her caste is what matters the most, it is what masks her achievement and makes it to the top of Google searches. Out of all the possible searches one could make, we decided to stick to the worst. We decided to crawl back to the clutches, our ancestors fought to get rid off.
This all gets proved as one googles Hima and the first popup is "Hima Das cast". The most related search for a gold medalist is something which is nowhere related to her success or her story and that says a lot. For a country which is trying to revamp itself and trying to build an open minded environment for it's citizens, such instances aren't just setbacks but also are powerful enough to bring us back to square one, It is surprising to see such a response from a country which is "the fastest growing economy in the world."
The news spread like fire and the results were evitable as the agitation from the youth was well represented on the social media platforms. The tweets openly talked about the change we need in the country, how instead of showering praises, applauding her achievements and saluting her perseverance, we decide to look for her birth history. All of the struggles she went through aren't something we are truly interested in. All what catches our mind is her ancestral history.
It is ironic that even the tear welled video of Hima Das couldn't warm our hearts, and nationalism is not all what we care about.
This is not the first time something like this has taken place. The same thing had happened during 2016, Rio Olympics when PV Sindhu and Sakshi Malik had made the nation proud. But certainly times have changed, it's been 2 years but sadly we are still there saddled with our narrow mindedness and deranged beliefs.