"I want to meet the PM in person and talk to him about my dream to represent the country," the 12-year-old, who won the gold medal in Karate Championship in Korea, told ANI on Sunday in an exclusive interview.
PM Modi, in his 51st ‘Mann Ki Baat’ addressed to the nation, heaped praises on Hanaya for clinching the gold medal. "12-year-old Hanaya from Anantnag in Kashmir has won a gold medal in Karate Championship in Korea. She trained hard with perseverance and fervour, studied its nuances and proved herself. On behalf of all countrymen, I wish her a bright future," he said.
Reflecting on the appreciation she received from the PM, the yellow belt martial artist said, "When PM Narendra Modi complimented me, I felt really good. It was a proud feeling for me. I have had never expected that he would take my name. But now that he has taken my name, I want to focus more on my game and achieve even more"
"Not only me, but the other athletes must also have felt motivated that they should work harder so that someday the PM takes their name as well," she added.
Hanaya, who has been performing for the past four years, also said "appreciation is very important and whoever gets it, fares well."
"When I won my first medal, it was a bronze. I presented my medal at home and my family appreciated it but I didn't felt good because I knew it was the third position, the third medal.”
“But when family supported me, my willpower increased and I was determined if I will practice harder I will be able to clinch the gold medal. It happens, if you get the support you do well," she concluded.
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