Ritanjali Hastir, Keekli Reporter, January, 2014, Shimla

“Parents should encourage and train their daughters in self defense from a young age considering the rise in crime against women” – Samriti. With the fast changing times when women no longer feel safe Samriti insists on getting trained in self defense so that when crucial times hit she is all set to face it.

samri.Jan-14Blessed are people when their passion becomes a resourceful skill. One such lucky girl is Samriti Thakur, a class seven student of Loreto Convent Tara Hall School who has attained her Black Belt Degree and still practices hard daily. Born and brought up in the Queen of Hills, Shimla City, Samriti had a strong impulse to learn Karate after seeing her seniors in school. Sharing her journey towards achieving her goal she say, “It has been four years since I started learning Karate as a hobby. At first in school it was a compulsory class but ultimately I started enjoying it and then decided to take up a full-fledged training course”.

At the tender age of 12 years, Samriti has participated in various competitions held at the district, state and national level. She has bagged nine medals for her outstanding performance which include four gold; two silver and three bronze medals. “Becoming a Black Belt is a dream of any Karate student and when I started taking this training, I was a bit scared. Considering the hearsays that it is not a cake walk and might take ages to reach even the second step of Yellow Belt; however with my hard work and determination I finally received my First Degree Black Belt”, she exclaims excitedly.

While talking about her experiences in the competition she says, “It is a very wrong notion that being hefty is weakness. In reality size does not matter at all as it is all about being flexible and fit to overcome ones opponent”. She further adds that I try to maintain a balance between my studies and practice. I usually train for two hours in a day and spend an hour to study. I personally feel that without any principle and discipline one can never achieve anything in life and this is my success mantra.

As per the major difference that she feels among students from Shimla to other state participants, “They are more flexible. There technique is little better and considering the lack of facilities in the state, I do feel that government should provide with proper training academies. Himachal has great potential and a little help from the government can brighten the future of many young students”.

If given an opportunity to be anything other than a sportsperson, Samriti wants to be a politician as she adds, “Politics runs in my blood since my father is a politician and I want to follow his footsteps. I wish to make my little contribution in developing our state”.

As per her future plans she says, “I am very lucky that my family is well receptive of my Karate practice and never force me to take a different route. I want to participate in as many tournaments as possible including the ones held at International level. However, before anything else, I want to complete my studies and prove myself to be best in everything I do”.

Considering the current times she advices, “I would like to request that all parents should encourage and train their daughters in self defense from a young age. Our city too has not remained untouched so prevention is always better than cure”.

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