Naresh Tumda was among the eleven players who lifted the Blind World Cup in 2018 at Sharjah on March 20 after successfully chasing the target of 308 runs. The team had received appreciation and acknowledgment for their success. But sadly, the times have changed for this player in two years, as now he has to sell vegetables in the Jamalpur market in Ahmedabad due to ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
The reporters tracked this player down who hails from Navsari and is the sole bread-earner for the family of five. Although claims were made for supporting visually impaired cricketers, n such help has been done by the Government, which has forced Tumda to take up such an alternative to earn his livelihood. One of the major reasons is also the reduction in the number of daily wage jobs and the Mahatama Gandhi National Rural Employment Act. Looking at such situations, Naresh had no choice but to come to Ahmedabad and make money by selling vegetables.
The player was disheartened by the fact that there is no support coming in by the Government during a crisis for national-level players. He also went ahead and said that the Indian Government starts raining money on the players when they win a world cup, but that doesn’t happen to the players like him who are visually impaired. He also asked the society and the Government to treat players like him equally.
Along with this national player, people from many professions have started taking up such jobs to earn their livelihood. A choreographer named Jayesh Nayak had to start selling vegetables as he was unable to pay rent for his dance studio at two locations. He started doing home delivery of the vegetable by his student’s support. He further added that given a chance he would reopen his dance studio but will keep doing this vegetable delivery business. Another diamond shiner named Nirav Patel, who was working in Surat, turned to do home delivery of vegetables to earn his livelihood. The crisis has impacted everyone adversely, but it is shocking to see a national player selling vegetables.