Bhopal: Social media with its sheer power and reach has turned many seemingly ordinary people into overnight stars. The latest such sensation is a tribal child from Chhattisgarh, Madda Ram Kawasi, who went viral after none other than legendary batsman Sachin Tendulkar tweeted a video of the boy playing cricket on New Year’s Day.
Unable to use either of his polio-affected legs, the class VII student from Benglur village in Dantewada district is an ardent admirer of the gentlemen’s game.
Someone shot a video of Madda as he batted and completed runs while crawling on the ground during a match. The clip became popular on social media and finally reached Tendulkar who posted it on Twitter.
“Start your 2020 with the inspirational video of this kid Madda Ram playing cricket with his friends. It warmed my heart and I am sure it will warm yours too,” tweeted the master batsman. The already popular video became a rage with more than one lakh people watching it and thousands sharing it on their timelines.
Start your 2020 with the inspirational video of this kid Madda Ram playing cricket 🏏 with his friends.— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) January 1, 2020
It warmed my heart and I am sure it will warm yours too. pic.twitter.com/Wgwh1kLegS
On reaching Benglur, News18 found that Madda belongs to a poor tribal family living in a small hut and his father, Dola Ram, is a farmer. The family is so deprived that it could not get proper treatment for the boy whose legs were rendered useless by polio in early childhood.
Both his mother, Bhime, and father, Dola, are well aware of Madda’s love for cricket along with studies. On many days, the boy’s parents put him on their shoulders and bring him to school, his teacher Jivanlal Rawat said, calling him a bright student who loves sports.
“It’s a matter of pride for all of us that Madda has made a name for our village,” he added.
Speaking to News18, Madda said he has been playing cricket for two years and is an all-rounder in his village team. He also accepted that he finds it hard to complete runs but that hasn’t stopped him from playing the game. Despite his parents being illiterate, the tenacious kid wishes to study further and become a doctor to serve the village.
After being tweeted about by Tendulkar, Madda has become a household name in Dantewada and Chhattisgarh. A team of educational officers also visited his home on Thursday. Later, Harish Lakhma, son of Chhattisgarh cabinet minister Kawasi Lakhma, reached his home with words of appreciation and promised all possible help.
The family, battling extreme penury, has requested the administration for a battery-operated tricycle for Madda and a stipend so that he can continue with his educational pursuits.
(With inputs from Abdul Hameed Quereshi)