As the Indian cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar once said “Enjoy the game and chase dreams. Dreams do come true”. The same goes for G. Rajaram, M.A. Sociology visually challenged student of the University. The game, which he initially taken up as a means of leisure has now ended up with him playing for the Telangana State Visually Impaired Cricket team.
With cricket being played in the family it was hard for him not to pursue the game. Born and brought up in Chennai, Rajaram got more attached to the game observing his brother, who is visually challenged like him play at school. From 2001 till now he has been playing cricket and still loves the game with all heart and vigour. All his hard work over the years has paid off with him having played the National level tournaments representing the state of Telangana. He played two tournaments, one in Lucknow and one in Mumbai, both which they lost in the group stages. But that does not stop him from seeking his dreams. He says that “Ignorance from the concerned authorities and non-availability of facilities is one of the main reasons for not winning matches”. When asked about the University’s attitude towards the upliftment of the game for the visually impaired people, he smiled and responded, “The attitude towards us from the nation as a whole is evident, just imagine how the university’s would be then”.
Though a body named Cricket Association for Blind in India (CABI) is there, it is not even registered with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). The only possible way to get funds to conduct the game is through their respective states and through any social or charity organisations. Not every person is lucky enough to get money from their states and this demoralizes them more.
University authorities have been ignorant of their existence and even after repeated requests and appeals, no action has been taken to improve cricket for the visually impaired. In 2012 University had provided them with cricket kits but since then no further initiatives have been taken. “There are lots of players with good talents around but none come forward due to lack of support”. Unlike the usual inter and intra sports tournaments conducted in the University, blind people do not get a chance to showcase their skills and talents.
An ardent fan of cricket and players like Virender Sehwag and A.B. De Villiers, he hopes that cricket for the blind improves and receives the international recognition it deserves.