Krishna Raut won the gold medal in All India Invitational Boxing Championship (the Surya Sen Trophy) in 1987 and the runner up trophy in 1992, when he was 15 years old. Now he is 43 and works as a temporary sweeper with the Howrah Municipal Corporation earning a little more than 200 per day. He lives in a one room house with his wife, three children, and brother who is suffering from tuberculosis.
He competed in the West Bengal Open Lalchand Roy Memorial Boxing Championship in 1985 and became a runner up. He won the same in 1987. He also won the West Bengal Boxing Championship organized by a youth festival in 1985 and the state inter-school and college boxing championship in 1990.
Krishna got no help from the government – neither when he was active in boxing nor now. Disappointed he said in a recent interview, “I do a temporary job with the municipal corporation as a casual employee. I don’t get proper wages. My son and daughter are studying and it’s difficult to pay for their studies”.
“I gave interviews at several places but was only given false promises with nothing coming through. I didn’t get any job because of my achievement”, he added.
For a man who battles poverty every day, what Krishna does to keep his passion alive is commendable. Every evening between 5 pm and 7 pm, the boxing ground adjoining the Howrah District Police Lines witnesses the practice of Krishna and his boxing students.
Around 150 students train with him, who shows them the intricate moves that are necessary to float like a butterfly and sting like a bee in the boxing ring. All these he does is absolutely free of cost and the kids learn with dedication and focus. He pays Rs. 200 annually to the Howrah District Boxing Association with which they buy gloves, punching bags and sand bags for their practice sessions.
Krishna says, “For me, sports mean a lot. I train these 40-50 boys free of cost helping them to progress both in sports and studies and go on to represent the country in Commonwealth Games and Olympics”. Some of the kids I have gone on to play national and state-level championships, some have secured jobs for themselves”.
‘No one has the power to shatter your dreams unless you give it to them’ – Maeve Greyson.
Fighting to earn two meals a day for his family, Krishna Raut didn’t let his dreams to die. He punches away his worries every day. What he does to keep his passion alive is a sure inspiration for all of us. It teaches us never to quit but to work hard to achieve our dreams.
We would love to hear your thoughts, concerns or problems with anything so we can improve!