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Jan 1, 2012
45th Hind Kesari - Hyderabad Gets Ready for Big Event
I was invited to cover the 45th Hind Kesari in Hyderabad, by Hon. Member of Parliament Shri Anjan Kumar Yadav ji, a great former wrestler who works hard to promote the wrestling by organizing this great event. His secretary, Mr. Narsingh Rao, arranged for my journey from Delhi.
Traveling with me were 250-300 wrestlers and many gurus as well. Bhagat Singh a veteran wrestler from guru Hanuman Akhara who has won the Hind Kesari title 3 times along with many other honors was traveling with me on the train. I told him about my work on traditional Indian wrestling and we became friends.
When we reached Hyderabad, Jagdish Kaliraman, a past winner of the prestigious Hind Kesari title was busy making sure everyone arrived safely and got to their hotels. He also arranged my trip, for which I am very much thankful. Jagdish ji met us at the station and brought us to our hotel. I ended up sharing a room with Bhagat Singh, which was great - he’s a very amiable fellow.
The next day we made our way to the stadium where weigh-ins were taking place before the start of the tournament. When we came out of the hotel, we saw that all of Hyderabad was abuzz. Everywhere we could see posters promoting the dangal, pamphlets, big wooden placards, even wood cutouts before the famous Char Minar. Railway stations, bus stands, and on walls throughout the city, there were signs of the event.
When we entered the stadium, the sun was shining as the wrestling arena was being constructed with bricks and cement. It was two-and-a-half feet high and was being made in two sections, so two matches could be wrestled simultaneously. Red clay was brought in and was laid in the wrestling area. There were giant drums, iron and wooden railings, chairs, tents. Microphones were being installed and security personnel were settling in.
What a huge event! I was sure it would be remembered for years and years to come.