With a little bit of help from the government and a lot from corporate backers, Indian athletes are not only performing but also raking it in.
If not for hockey, Sardar Singh wouldn't have been a DSP in Haryana Police or owned a Ford Endeavor SUV. The success at the CWG (silver) and Asiad (bronze), has made him richer by Rs 50 lakh.
Geeta and Babita
The Bhiwani siblings grabbed medals and attention at the CWG. Geeta got gold, Babita silver. With no jobs in hand, they were struggling before Mittal Champions Trust took them under its wings. It gives them a monthly stipend of Rs 5000 in addition to other expenses.
She is one for the future and the Olympic Gold Quest is investing in her. Luka, a PT Usha protege, created waves by breaking Shiny Wilson's long-standing national record of 1:59.85 in 800m. She trains at the Usha School of Athletics at Koilandy, Kerala.
His father was a humble head constable in the Haryana Police. Life, however, took a favourable turn after the Beijing Olympics. MCT-supported Akhil's run to the quarters in the boxing ring won him instant recognition. He is now a DSP in the Haryana Police and owns houses in posh localities of Rohtak and Gurgaon.