Dipa Karmakar’s pathbreaking performance in the Rio Olympics was lauded by many, including former Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, who was picked to present her, along with PV Sindhu and Sakshi Malik, a BMW car in September. However, owing to maintenance issues, Dipa has decided to return her gift to the original owner V Chamundeswaranath, president of the Hyderabad Badminton Association.
The prime reason behind it seems to be the difficulty Dipa and her family is having maintaining such a posh car in a city like Agartala, where the roads are narrow and not well-maintained. Moreover, since Dipa’s next assignment, the Challengers’ Cup in Germany is a month away; Dipa has been advised not to bear the maintenance cost and rather devote her time towards practicing.
Dipa was not available for the comment, but her coach Bisheswar Nandi shed some light on the topic. “It wasn’t Dipa’s decision. Rather it was a collective decision taken by her family and me,” Nandi told TOI Sports. “There are two main reasons behind it. First, there is no BMW service center in Agartala and secondly, the roads are not suitable to drive a posh car such as this.”
The key reason behind Dipa’s uncertainty though seems to be her participation for the Challengers Cup. The Gymnastics Federation of India has informed Nandi that Dipa will only be able to travel to Germany provided the six-member Indian camp can participate as a team.