GUWAHATI: Celebrations have swept the Dhing residence, in central Assam, of star sprinter Hima Das, who scripted history last night by becoming the only Indian athlete ever to win a gold medal in a track event at the world level. Hima had clinched the gold in 400m race in the IAAF World Under-20 Athletics Championships at Finland yesterday. As the news spread, well-wishers and neighbours flooded Hima's residence at Dhing since last night.
Hima has spoken to her family a couple of times after the winning dash and sounded elated at the victory, thanking everyone back home for their blessings and well wishes, her family members said at Dhing. The elated mother of Hima said her daughter always had set high goals and worked relentlessly to achieve it. Her final race was shown on a big screen at her village at Dhing yesterday, where all villagers, as well as people from nearby areas, had witnessed Hima entering the record book.
Assam Governor Prof. Jagdish Mukhi congratulated Hima and said in a statement, she is a source of motivation and inspiration to other young athletes who can emulate her achievement to scale any height in life.Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, through a statement, said the Assamese youngster has achieved a rare feat by becoming the first Indian athlete to win gold in such a prestigious track event.
Sonowal also announced that the golden girl would be felicitated at a state level function where she will also be given a cash award. In order to inspire the budding players of the state to aim big and the young generation to take up sports seriously, Hima will also be made the state's brand ambassador for sports, Sonowal announced. The Assam Athletics Association announced Rs 2 lakh as cash prize.
The 'Dhing Express', as she was dubbed by local media here, had shot to limelight after qualifying for the 400m finals at Common wealth Games in Gold Coast in April this year.She had gone on to set a new personal best of 51.13s in the same event in the National Interstate Championship at Guwahati last month while winning the gold while qualifying for the next Asian Games.