AHMEDABAD: Anvi Vijay Zanzarukia, popularly known as 'Rubber Girl', who has made a name for herself in Yogasana through her hard work and resourcefulness despite her physical and mental disabilities, has been awarded the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar.
The award was presented by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the presence of Collector, Surat through a video conference. PM Modi also had an online conversation with 'Rubber Girl' Anvi and her parents.
Anvi means the girl who is born with many illnesses. Anvi has lived with three health challenges since birth -- "congenital heart defect" for which she has undergone open-heart surgery, "TRISOMY 21" with 75% intellectual disability and Hirschsprung's disease, a condition that affects the large intestine (colon) and causes problems with passing stool.
Anvi, despite many such problems, knows the wonderful art of yoga through which she can bend her body in different ways. As a result, she has made a name for herself as the Rubber Girl. She has been learning yoga for the last three years. She has won gold medals in various state and national-level championships in yoga through her determination and hard work. She has won three gold medals and two bronze medals in national-level yoga competitions in the last three years. She has participated in a total of 42+ yoga competitions in which she has won 51 medals.
Anvi remains a role model for all disabled children. And the important thing is that she has won all these awards by competing with normal children i.e. healthy children, as there is no separate category for mentally handicapped children in yoga.
Her mother, Mrs. Avni Zanzarukia, who worked tirelessly for Anvi's achievement, said she was overjoyed that her daughter received the award. Despite many physical and mental problems, Anvi has not given up, she said. Initially, she was unable to do her daily chores by herself. "When she was 10 years old, she was sleeping with her feet on her head. Seeing such a posture as Yogasana, I thought of sending her to the yoga field at that time and started teaching yoga with Namrata, the yoga teacher of her school," she added.
Anvi’s Father Vijay Zanzarukia said that Anvi wished that she would continue to bring laurels to the country by practicing yoga and at the same time expressed his desire to do yoga and ‘Surya Namaskar’on the same platform as PM Modi.