From being a 17-year-old Torch Bearer at the rally at the London Olympics in 2012 to now working as a permanent labourer with a daily wage of Rs 205 at Dibrugarh district’s Borborooah Tea Estate in Assam, Pinky Karmakar’s life has seen a complete dismal.
Her responsibility at the Tea Estate is to ensure the tea garden labourers adhere to the Covid protocol.
Recalling her London days and terming them as the “best days of her life”, her eyes lit up the moment she mentioned how heavy and hot the Torch with the flame was yet the pride and the glory bestowed her all the strength to pull through. She even recalled her mesmerising meet with the legendary footballer David Beckham at his academy.
Transitioning from the dreamland to the harsh realities of life, Pinky continued with her societal welfare initiatives and even when help never arrived for her, she never missed giving back to society in her own ways. Before she made it to London as the torchbearer, 17-year-old Pinky was in charge of UNICEF’s Sports for Development program, which along with other schools, was also run at her school. Her philanthropic nature made her take up an initiative to help 40 women of her surroundings to acquire the basics of educations and begin their journey with literacy.
But those glorious days and golden moments did not hint at what was coming her way. After she returned from London, a red carpet awaited her and promises of government job, offers and help for sports career poured in from every nook and corner which till date have never seen any fulfillment or even an inch of progress.
Nursing her aging father and looking after her younger siblings, Pinky who lost her mother a few years ago, took up the job at the tea estate to support the family. Her academics had hit a roadblock to her financially impeding which now she wished to resolve and got back to her college for her Bachelors of Arts degree.
A young girl, from the lost terrains of eastern India, dreamt big and wanted to represent her country as an archer only to be let down by everyone.
“No one came forward to help. Not the Government nor the UNICEF”, laments Pinky.