The joy of witnessing young achievers and child prodigies perform on a stage that fully reflects their abilities cannot be overstated. There’s no denying the sheer joy of watching these young geniuses own the stage and own it with their special prowess, whether it’s the twinkle in their eyes or the satisfaction of viewers in acknowledging India’s Young Geniuses.
World Kickboxing Champion – Twice Over
That’s exactly what happened when BYJU’S Young Genius, a News18 initiative, launched its second season with Tajamul Islam, a 14-year-old teen from Tarkpora in Kashmir who overcame societal norms and her father’s opposition to become the World Kickboxing Champion.
Islam, who was just nine years old at the time, won the World Kickboxing Championship in Andria, Italy in 2016! She has consistently won a slew of other accolades and medals, including the gold medal at the National Kickboxing Championships in Delhi in 2015 in the U-13 category.
Starting when she was five years old, Islam overcame her father’s initial opposition and converted him into one of his most ardent supporters. After the 2016 victory, Islam was forced to teach kickboxing classes when she was only 12 years old due to a financial crisis. After training over 800 students, Islam now hopes that her students will shine and win awards in kickboxing.
Her most recent achievement occurred in October 2021, when she won the gold medal at the World Kickboxing Championships in Egypt and flew the Indian tricolour throughout the stadium. If kickboxing becomes official in 2028, Islam has bigger ambitions and hopes to bring home an Olympic medal. We can’t help but feel confident about her quest with such a glorious backdrop to her storey, something that Lovlina Borgohain, an Olympic Bronze Medalist herself, seems to have after meeting Islam on the show.
An Olympiad And Award-Winning App Developer
Harmanjot Singh, the next Young Genius featured in the episode is an award-winning app developer and Olympiad Champion. The 14-year-old lives just a few hundred kilometres away and is the proud recipient of the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar in 2021, under the Innovation category. Singh is known for creating the Raksha Women’s Safety App that was inspired by the thought of keeping his mother and other women safe.
The app allows users to reach out to the police or immediate family members as well as contact nearby police stations and call a list of emergency numbers in case of unexpected problems.
Singh also received the Silicon Valley Code of Honor organised by White Hat Organization, based in San Francisco California, USA for the Raksha Women’s Safety App that is available on the Google Play Store for free and has over 5000 downloads.
Singh’s entire family comes from a medical background, however his love for physics and computers made him sign up for Olympiad tests since he was in his 3rd grade. He won his first medal in Science during that time and started coding in his 7th grade.
While he achieved recognition for Raksha Women’s Safety App, Singh has gone ahead and created two more apps in the last year – Cyber Buddy, an anti cyber bullying app and Calmify, a mental healthcare app that helps to take a healthy approach to emotional wellness.
For now, Singh has a new objective courtesy jury member R S Sodhi, MD of Amul who suggested an app that can help farmers and villagers in a fruitful and meaningful way. We’ll be waiting for that one!
That’s not all. We’ll also be keeping our eyes open for the second episode of BYJU’S Young Genius when it airs next week and be inspired by more of India’s child prodigies. Make sure to watch the episode and follow along as we keep you updated.