Language of compassion needs no tutoring: Roma Balwani

Balwani writes about the symbiotic connect which cricket enjoys in India.


 Cricket is revered almost as religion across India. This sport has a symbiotic connect for our nation, and it is no wonder that our national team have become heroes. We are known to be a cricketing nation because of the passion for the sport, by a billion audience. 

 This passion is what I experienced at close quarters, when by chance, I got the opportunity for sponsoring a cricket match in my earlier corporate avatar.
 I went to Dharamshala to witness a Deaf Asian T 20 match in 2014 being played. In the scenic surroundings it is one of the best stadiums I have seen so far.
 My reason to visit Dharamshala and watch the match was more to tick of one more from my bucket list, a visit to His Holiness, Dalai Lama’s monastery. This experience eventually became a memorable visit in more ways than one. The serenity of the place itself made me introspect on ‘giving back’ and the will to support these amazing specially abled players who are as skilled as our professional players. Becoming closely associated with the organising body Deaf Cricket Society, today I am a proud member of the DCS, Advisory Committee.
 With all my lessons learnt in communication, the irony I faced was the challenge to communicate with the hearing impaired players. All I can say, the language of compassion needs no tutoring. And without a formal learning of the sign language, I can still communicate and get myself heard with team Deaf Cricket Society.
 Run as a non-profit society, the energy, focus and dedication of Sumit Jain, the General Secretary and his office bearers, who started this initiative in 2012 to train the hearing impaired talent in cricket and giving them a sense of pride of being acceptable in society is a slow process yet he persists.
 With many accolades & wins both nationally & internationally in Asian countries over the years, Deaf Cricket Society has emerged as an independent body, having a pool of hearing impaired talent from across the country.
 Their aim to mainstream cricket for the deaf helped them actively participate and be a member of the Deaf- International Cricket Council. DCS aims to soar high and be the beacon of hope to the hearing impaired cricketers and were chosen by the DICC committee  to host the first edition of the Deaf -ICC World Cup T 20 match to be played in even years in the participating nations home grounds.
 This first edition of the Deaf-ICC T 20 World Cup is being held in the scenic surroundings of Teri Gram Cricket  Grounds, Gurugram, Haryana  from 24 th to 30 November, 2018.
 The excitement has slowly started to build up. Cricket Australia decided to sponsor the Deaf Australian team who are arriving tomorrow in India. Rest of the participating nations teams will also arrive in the coming week.
 The response for this match has now caught the attention of India’s forward looking corporates, foundations who are supporting this cause to encourage disability sport, which incidentally is included in schedule VII to promote disability sport as part of of the Companies Act, 2013.
 Audience do come to the cricket ground to motivate these amazing players from seven nations who are coming from far & near to play and vie to win the coveted Winners Trophy.

(The author is a well known Communications Specialist and Member, Advisory Committee Deaf Cricket Society)

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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cricket Roma Balwani Deaf Cricket Deaf-ICC T 20 World Cup

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