Olympian Neeraj and Naseem share a Guru-shishya bond

Story by  ATV | Posted by  Aasha Khosa | Date 12-08-2021
Neeraj Chopra with Naseem Ahmed (Twitter)
Neeraj Chopra with Naseem Ahmed (Twitter)


Shahnawaz Alam/New Delhi



Amidst a raging controversy about who should get the reward for coaching Javeline thrower Olympian Neeraj Chopra who bagged gold in Tokyo, one person who is inconspicuously celebrating his success is Naseem Ahmed, a coach in Panchkula, Chandigarh.


Naseem was the first coach who took a 13-year-old Neeraj under his wings for almost seven years at Tau Devi Lal Stadium in Chandigarh. That was the beginning of Chopra’s tryst with sports and also a way to deal with obesity.


Though Neeraj was later coached by others including foreigners, he continues to enjoy a Guru-Shishya equation with Naseem. He never sits on a chair in front of Naseem.

When Neeraj was leaving for Tokyo to take part in the Olympics, Naseem Ahmed wrote on social media,


"Neeraj is a big athlete today. Despite this, he still does not sit on the chair in front of me. Whenever someone goes to play in a big competition, I bless him. And before every competition, I ask him for a medal in Gurudakshina. He sends photo messages as soon as he wins the medal.. I am lucky that I was able to give an athlete like Neeraj Chopra for the country. I also participated in the Olympics. Asked him for a gold medal."


Naseem Ahmed has told that in March he met Neeraj at Patiala for a competition. Neeraj Chopra set a record here and he knew that his ward was doing well.


Naseem Ahmed said Neeraj Chopra doesn't talk much. Whenever he goes to a big competition, he seeks his blessings. Ahmed had even arranged a big screen in Chandigarh to watch Neeraj's Olympic performance.


A video of Naseem and his students celebrating the victory of Neeraj Chopra at the Panchkula stadium has also surfaced on social media.


The controversy about who deserved the reward for coaching Neeraj Chora arose after the Karnataka government announced a reward of Rs 10 lakh for Kashinath Niak, an Armyman. The head of the Athletics Federation of India (AFI) Adille Sumariwalla questioned Niak’s role in training the Olympian and claimed Neeraj was coached by foreign coaches.

Niak had claimed he was accompanying Neeraj as a deputy coach while he went abroad to get trained.