Express News Service

GUWAHATI: The memory of Lovlina Borgohain’s boxing bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics is not going to be short-lived – every drop of water that her villagers will drink will remind them of this achievement.

After building a motorable road, the state government is now ensuring piped water to every household at the pugilist’s Baro Mukhia village in Sarupathar Assembly constituency of Golaghat district.

And not just that, local MLA Biswajit Phukan of the BJP has already submitted a proposal to the state government to set up a sports academy at Naharbari, 2 km away from her home.

Phukan told The New Indian Express on Tuesday that the work for the implementation of both projects — sports academy and piped water — would be started within this year.

The academy will be constructed on a piece of government land measuring 40 bighas or 5.35 hectares. According to plans, it will have a playground, an auditorium, a boxing ring, an arena for archery, and other facilities, the MLA said.

ALSO, READ | Box-office hit: Lovlina overcomes year of misery to ensure India second medal in Tokyo Olympics

“I have already taken up the issue of sports academy with Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. He responded positively,” Phukan said.

He said the Rs 15-crore project would be constructed with government funds or CSR funds. He said he could see the excitement of villagers when he visited the site the other day.

“I am also working towards ensuring a water supply project under Jal Jeevan Mission in Lovlina’s village. Every household in the village will get piped water,” the MLA said.

According to the state’s Power Works Department, a concrete road has replaced the 3.5 km kutcha road from Barpathar town to the boxer’s village. It could not be widened in patches due to land issues, a department engineer, who executed the project, said.

Tiken Borgohain, Lovlina’s father, was excited on hearing about the upcoming projects. He thanked the local MLA for the initiatives.

Before her Olympics glory, the locals had highlighted the lack of infrastructure in the village, a fact that was first reported by this newspaper. Now that the infrastructure starts falling in place, there is also a word of caution from a section of villagers.

They pointed out that too much attention to ace athlete Hima Das after her success is believed to have subsequently affected her performance.

Hima’s Kandhulimari village in central Assam’s Nagaon district had transformed after she had shot into the limelight by winning the 400-metre final at the World U-20 Championships in Tampere, Finland in 2018.