Pooja Biswas is a sports lover and a fitness trainer whose dream of making it big as an athlete was foiled by penury and personal problems. But, she nurtures the dream of making her 7-year-old daughter Avneet Kaur compete in the Olympics and win a medal for her country when she grows up.
Pooja Biswas’ would have been an awesome success story if help had come her way while she was mired in penury and lacked the facilities that could help her make it big in athletics. Once in a while, perhaps, we have to face the reality and accept that not all born athletes have an opportunity to fulfill their dream. Pooja Biswas’ was one such story which, however, comes with a rider – she hasn’t given up yet.
Born to a carpenter, Kalipada 63, and Saneeta Biswas, a homemaker, in Rangat, a town in middle Andaman island, Pooja Biswas’ heart was in sports at the cost of her studies right from a very young age. She was interested in athletics. Her father wanted her to grow up to be an athlete like PT Usha.
At her school in Rangat, she participated in 100 and 200 m sprints besides high jump and long jump. Sadly, the lack of a good coach and facilities forced her to switch over to water sports.
“We were poor. I didn’t have a coach or proper facility to train so that I can compete in national events,” she told The New Indian Express.
She came under the tutelage of the then Sports Authority of India coach Esudasan and won medals in rowing for the island. Unfortunately, she met with an accident in the year 2013 and had to give up rowing.
Her marriage in 2014 was a disaster and she underwent a lot of physical and mental suffering. Amid personal problems, depression, and medical treatment, the 28-year-old trained in a gym in Gujarat. She also mastered Zumba, aerobic exercise, besides becoming a fitness instructor and personal trainer.
According to a report in Andaman Chronicle, after completing her course in Gujarat, Pooja tried her luck in the islands with the government sector, but to her dismay, her potential was not realized. However, the report added, “Not giving up this time, she approached the RGT School, which is being managed by Retd. Director of Sports, A&N Administration, Joy Kumar Roy. Roy had known Pooja as a young Rowing enthusiast during his time with the Administration and readily offered her a space to conduct Fitness Training. Gradually with a smile on her face and confidence within, Pooja Biswas started winning hearts as she spread smiles across.”
Presently, she works as a trainer in a gym for a salary of Rs 12,000 per month. She has trained several women on the island by now. She was reportedly invited by the Andaman & Nicobar (A&N) Police and the A&N Command for conducting training sessions.
“I wish to set up my own Gym. But I don’t have money for that,” she said.
Her younger brother Vicky and sister Payal Biswas work in a private company.
Pooja wishes to train more women and encourage them to care for their physical and mental fitness.
“Her focus is only on girls and women. She wants to train only women,” Denis Giles of wi said.
Moreover, this single mother has a dream. “My dream is to train my daughter and make her compete in the Olympics,” Pooja Biswas affirms.