Dipa Karmakar came into the limelight by becoming the first Indian woman to qualify in the individual Vault finals in the Rio Olympics 2016. Though she finished in the eight in the competition. She created by ending India’s 52-year-long wait of having a gymnast at the Olympic Games which can be dated back to 1964. She started training gymnastics at the young age of 6 years and hails from Agartala in Tripura. Dipa was mentored by veteran Bisbeshwar Nandi. The athlete suffered from a postural deformity called flat feet when she first started training under the coach, Bisbeshwar Nandi. Dipa puts extra shift to get the curve in her feet so that she could participate at the highest level.
At the start like any other children wasn’t interested to take up but took up the sport as it was her father’s dream who was a coach at the Sports Authority of India. Post winning the2007 National Championships, Dipa fell in the love for the game and the rest, as they say, is history. Dipa Karmakar in the starting of her career had no proper training equipment for over eight months but soon fortune changed in her favour when the Federation arranged for a two-month camp for the gymnasts to train. Coach Nandi credits the camp for her accomplishment in Hiroshima. Dipa has won 77 medals which consist of 67 gold medals is inclusive of all the silverware she won in the state, national and international championship. Dipa won the Junior National Championship at a young age of 14-year-old- in Jalpaiguri.
Dipa has seen a share of ups and downs in her life. She has seen a share of ups and downs in her life to become a sports icon and become the face of gymnastics in India. She along with Digvijay Singh Deo, Vimal Mohan and Dipa’s Coach, Bishweshwar Nandi had penned down a book titled “Dipa Karmakar: The Small Wonder” has won Biography of the Year at Ekarma Sports Literature Awards in New Delhi.
The biography is special in many ways, one of them being mention of Nadia Comaneci – the first-ever gymnast to achieve a perfect ten in the sport. It was also talked about the journey which touches the chord of readers as well as athletes and also inspires readers to never give up on their dreams.
The biography was launched by none other than Sachin Tendulkar in the first half of this year. The book takes the readers to various stages of Karmakar’s life. The books started with stories from her tough childhood addressing how she was ridiculed to her highs towards achieving her dream and becoming a sports icon of the country. Also reminiscing her journey of becoming first Indian woman gymnast to win a medal at the Commonwealth Games, and also successfully attempting the death-defying vault ‘The Produnova’ at Rio 2016 which made her popular all around the world.
Khel Ratna awardee was quoted saying that, I am really happy that my biography has been so well received and to win the Biography of the Year is an honour I cannot emphasise on how elated that makes me. I am really glad that the people of the country have loved my story and all the credit goes to the authors who have documented each and everything in such a way which I even I couldn’t imagine about. I would like to congratulate each and every person who has been involved in this journey and with the book.”
The book has been published by Fingerprint and post receiving overwhelming reception by the English edition, a Bengali translation of the book has also been launched.