Hyderabad: Telangana-based sailor Preethi Kongara had bagged the gold medal at the Asian Games selection trials last year. Netizens have since been lauding her and sharing her inspiring story of growing up in a low-income community and rising to make the country proud by winning the international award.
The story went viral on the internet and has even reached industrialist and business tycoon Anand Mahindra, who is quite active on social media. The industrialist applauded the athlete and said he would love to meet her in person and take sailing lessons from her.
“This is truly a ‘Rise’ story. I’m overwhelmed reading about her. So proud of Naandi_India & NanhiKali for supporting her. And of Suheim for coaching her. Maybe when Preeti has the time, I’d love to meet her and go sailing on my catamaran so that she can coach me! (sic),” the CEO of Mahindra Group said.
He tweeted his views by resharing the original post by Naandi Foundation CEO, Manoj Kumar. He called it one of the “most inspiring stories” where a grade 8 girl from a low-income community became the captain of India’s Sailing Team.
“Meet Preeti Kongara of Nallakunta Govt school whom Team Naandi India selected from Project Nanhi Kali in 2016 & brought to Suheim Sheikh to teach her sailing. Today, she’s India No 1 in the Olympic Mixed Double 470 Class of boat. Sports is a poverty breaker (sic),” he wrote.
The post has been flooded with many heart-warming comments from netizens. “For every find such as this, we are missing out hundreds. We need systematic talent scout not just in sports.. but in many other fields..” “Wow. This is really so inspiring,” another comment read.
Preethi Kongara hails from Telangana and has received international recognition for winning a gold medal in the Asian Games sailing trials held in the Bombay Harbour, last year in November. She began sailing at the age of 10 at the Yacht Club of Hyderabad.