Asian Games medallist Poonam describe reasons for decline of judo


Once Anjum Chopra was the vice-captain in a cricket team and Poonam Chopra was the captain. Poonam got the best bowler award from Kapil Dev on one occasion and got a best fielder award from Bishan Singh Bedi on another occasion. That time women’s cricket was not so popular. Keeping this in mind, she at the behest of her sister Mamta Shaukeen, who was a judo player she left cricket and joined judo. Poonam won a medal in her new game in Hiroshima Asian Games 28 years ago. Apart from her, till date no Indian woman has ever won any medal in judo.
Today Poonam is working as Senior Judo Coach in the Sports Department of Haryana Government. She is very upset as there is no proper development of Judo in the country. She gave five reasons for this. She said that the government promotes indigenous games, while this sport related to self-defense is considered as foreign. Secondly, in most of the departments, there are no jobs for Judo. In the Navy and Air force department, there is no team for this game, due to this the interest of the younger generation in this sport is going away. Poonam said that this game is a self defense game especially for women. It has not been made compulsory in schools.
Fourth, this game should be in the lines of IPL. There should be a league in which the players should have the opportunity to improve their financial condition. Poonam said that the fifth big reason is the dominance of this game stay confined to the states only. Poonam Chopra was a member of NADA’s Disciplinary Committee for many years when the cases of basketball players Satnam Singh and Narsingh Yadav came before her. Apart from this, she was also with Anil Kumble’s company Tanwik for almost three years. She says that she was currently serving the state government’s Judo center in Bahadurgarh.