In this cricket crazy country called India every child wants to become cricketer. And when my 10 year-old son Joy said that he too wants to be cricketer I was not surprised. He picked up the game quite well and is a good enough player according to his age. I have, seriously, no qualms as what he becomes when he grows up. I told Joy I would support him even if he wants to be a cricket player.
But, what happened with Unmukt Chand changed my perception. I was shocked to my wits end when I read that he has been denied permission to write papers because cricket kept him away from college and did not have enough attendance as per the University guidelines.
It is better that this issue has now been resolved and vice-chancellor, Delhi University has given permission to appear in semester exams.
But there is a bigger question. Is this the fate of sportsmen in India doing national duties? Should this happen to captain of a national team that won glory for the country? This speaks volumes about the sports policy of the country. Our national sports minister says that in 2020 Olympics India will at least win 25 medals. But how – no one has the answer.
Interestingly, in India all the sports associations at the national and the state level are headed by politicians – some of them are ministers in the union and state governments. These ministers formulate policies. Cannot they formulate a policy making sports an integral part of curriculum?
There should be a system where a student representing state should get 10 per cent additional marks in final result. At national level it should be 20 per cent and if he represents country he should get additional 25 per cent marks. Now, what will happen – if a sports man represents India but gets 45 per cent marks in academics he will get 25 per cent additional marks making it 70 per cent.
This system will motivate parents to send their children to sports because they know that now academic score would not suffer because the kid was playing for India.
If the law makers cannot make this law they should make another ensuring attendance of law makers mandatory in Parliament or State Assembly. There should be a cut-off percentage, failing which they will lose their membership.