Two youngsters living in the same neighbourhood in a Bhopal slum will represent India in the world fencing championship to be held in Antalya, Turkey from September 30 to October 8.
Born and brought up in narrow bylanes of Om Nagar slum, Amardeep Basediya and Himalaya Vishwakarma, both 20 years of age, were selected for the international event on September 7.
Himalaya’s father Harka Vishwakarma is a chaat seller and Amardeep’s dad Munshi Basediya, works as a peon in the state’s sports department.
Himalaya from the age of 11, pursued fencing, an unconventional sport and has not looked back since.
A student of Bachelor of Physical Education (BP Ed), Himalaya won the bronze in an individual and silver in the team events in the Senior National Games held in Manipur in 2008.
“I’m quite optimistic of winning medals in Turkey,” said Himalaya, who during his childhood used to help his father run the chaat thela.
Amardeep started fencing a year earlier than his friend. He has won four gold, six silver and seven bronze medals at the national level in his 10-year fencing career. Son of a class IV employee, Amardeep had tough time pursuing his passion. “ But grit and determination has got me a place in national team for the World Championship”, he says.