Meet Arif Khan. He is India’s skiing champion and has ruled the National Championships in the Junior and Senior sections since 2005 – all towards achieving his ultimate dream, to represent India in the Asian Winter Games 2017 and the South Korea Winter Olympics in 2018.
Says Arif, “I believe that ski racing shows ones true potential; mentally, emotionally, psychologically and obviously physically. It’s a sport that rips one apart until the hard work, the early mornings, the frostbitten toes and the frustration pays off.. The hours spent watching videos, blowing out of the course, jet lagging and not wanting to look at the scoreboard, it’s all worth it. Every single second!”
From a young age, Arif knew that skiing is what he wanted to do. He aspires to be the best skier in the world and his father, Yaseen Khan has supported him tremendously. Yaseen runs the local ski shop in Gulmarg and Arif himself works there in the off-season – all to help pay his way through for a sport that isn’t cheap to begin with. Arif’s dream is to represent India at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Korea. And though the young Kashmiri skis for the Indian National Team with the Indian tri-colour proudly emblazoned on his ski suit, neither the Indian Olympic Association nor the Winter Games Federation of India funds his training, equipment or travel.
Eminent media personality Dilshad Master Kumar has taken up the cause and is determined to help Arif achieve his dream. Dilshad has spent over two decades in the media industry and today she is the director of Mercury Himalayan Expeditions (MHE) – India’s pioneer adventure travel company. She’s started a crowdfunding campaign
to meet the expenses for this mission. Support has been pouring in from all quarters and several Bollywood celebrities are pitching in to do their bit.
The only reward Arif can give those who contributed, is his talent. Let’s all do our bit to make Arif’s victory, our victory!
Youth Ki Awaaz is an open platform where anybody can publish. This post does not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions.