On the occasion of International Women’s Day, 104-year-old Man Kaur was awarded the Nari Shakti Puraskar for 2019 for her exceptional contribution to women empowerment at an event in Rashtrapati Bhawan. This annual award is presented to individuals, groups, and institutions in recognition of their extraordinary work towards the empowerment of marginalised and vulnerable women in particular.
“The award carries an honorarium of Rs 2 lakh and a certificate,” reported Hindustan Times, in accordance to the letter received by Man Kaur from the Women and Child Development ministry.
Man Kaur won her first ever medal in 2007 when she ran a 100m race at the Chandigarh Masters Athletics Meet, after she watched her eldest son, Gurdev, take part in a race in Patiala. Following this, she bagged over 30 medals across the world, participating in and winning track and field events.
After earning a gold medal at a 100m sprint at the 2017 World Masters Athletic Championship in Auckland, Man Kaur became a renowned athlete and was commended for her excellent dedication and strength. She soon went on to bag four gold medals at the World Masters Athletic Championship in Poland, and now holds several world records.
“I will continue to run and take part in competitions as long as I can. It gives me a lot of happiness when I run,” affirmed Man Kaur, according to Hindustan Times.
Kaur has won more than 20 medals in the Masters Games around the world, and now aspires to bag the gold medal at the 2020 Masters Game in Japan. Another record was set in 2016 when she became the world’s fastest 100-year-old at the American Masters Games, Vancouver. All this, despite being diagnosed with osteoporosis.
Women and other sprinters around the world know her by her title of the ‘Miracle Mom’ from Chandigarh. When asked how Man Kaur was able to shatter stereotypes and prove that age is just a number, her son had told Stuff earlier that “she’s eating good food and training and there’s no ill will against anyone, so her mind is very good.” Her diet includes six rotis made with sprouted grains, soy milk, fruit, and probiotic-rich kefir.
Calling her an inspiration to people world over, her son added that netizens from India often ask after her on Facebook.
(Edited by Evelyn Ratnakumar)
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