HT Youth Forum: Celebrating youth, the epitome of hope, change
Shooting star Abhinav Bindra hits bull’s eye as he asks young achievers to aim high with self-belief.punjab Updated: Oct 26, 2018 22:11 IST
Start with self-belief and bow out with self-respect.
That’s the piece of advice Abhinav Bindra, the first and only Indian shooting star to win an individual gold in the Olympics, had for the Top 30 Under 30 achievers of the region at the seventh edition of the HT Youth Forum here on Friday evening.
Bindra, who was the chief guest at HT’s flagship event that shines the spotlight on youth brilliance in diverse fields from sports to fine arts, said: “I congratulate today’s achievers and believe such events are important for the longer journey of life ahead. At the beginning of our career, we look for external glory and validation, but these are transient moments. Personal achievement holds a broader significance if there is a desire and belief to make it count for others.”
Looking dapper in a formal suit with a sky blue tie and sporting a salt-and-pepper neat haircut, the 36-year-old gentleman poked fun at himself and said: “I feel old today after being made chief guest at the Youth Forum.”
Recounting his journey through five Olympics, he said: “I enjoyed the Rio Olympics of 2016 the most despite missing out on a second medal after the gold at Beijing. Athens in 2004 was a wake-up call when I finished seventh despite the hard work.” A loose tile cost him the spot.
Sharing the stuff champs are made of, he said: “I could have quit but I chose to try to be perfect on an imperfect day. My performance was the only thing in my control. So, I practised with a low tile and low lights…it was extreme behaviour but it added to my versatility.” The result was India’s first individual Olympic gold.
His love for the sport and self-belief transformed the shy youngster into a confident world champion. “Results give limited feedback. You will realise eventually that it’s the act of giving so that others gain that is more important. Rarely does a person enjoy the shade of the tree one plants. The joy lies in that realisation.”
In his welcome address, HT executive editor Ramesh Vinayak said: “We at Hindustan Times, Chandigarh, turned 18 only this April. We focus on the young and believe in celebrating the youth that is the epitome of hope and change.”
The panellists, comprising cricketer Virender Sehwag, actors Kartik Aryan and Yami Gautam, and athlete Neeraj Chopra, discussed if India’s demographic dividend has really delivered.
The guests included winners of debates held on the topic in colleges across the region in the run-up to the finale.
The event blended the past, present and the future as the young achievers, who are tomorrow’s leaders, were honoured in the perfect backdrop of Mughal and Rajput architecture at The Oberoi Sukhvilas luxury resort in New Chandigarh.
First Published: Oct 26, 2018 22:09 IST