They paved way for gym­nast from Agar­tala to Rio

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Rahul Kar­makar and Priyanka Deb Bar­man let­ter@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Dipa Kar­makar is 25% short of per­fec­tion in the Pro­dunova, con­sid­ered the riski­est vault in gym­nas­tics. Be­hind the 75% she has mas­tered and every­thing else she has achieved as a gym­nast are a host of peo­ple — right from her par­ents to her school head­mistress and an in­vis­i­ble hand from Haryana.

Dipa, 22, be­came the toast of the na­tion af­ter be­com­ing the first In­dian gym­nast to qual­ify for the Olympics, con­sid­ered the Holy Grail of sport­ing ex­cel­lence.

But the young­ster is the just the lat­est among sev­eral young­sters from Tripura in the country’s re­mote North­east to ex­cel in gym­nas­tics, not among the most pop­u­lar sport in In­dia.

Although the credit for groom­ing Dipa as a world class ath­lete is given to Bise­sh­war Nandi, the man who made Tripura syn­ony­mous with gym­nas­tics is Dalip Singh, an Army phys­i­cal in­struc­tor from Haryana’s Ma­hen­dra­garh district.

RAHUL KAR­MAKAR/HT

In­dian gym­nast Dipa Kar­makar with coach Bise­sh­war Nandi, who groomed her to be­come a world-class ath­lete.

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