|And she learnt never to be honest again!|
The discussion made me think of the last Indian who showed any passion for athletics and paid a heavy price for it: Madhu Sapre, the first Indian model of any consequence. The year was 1992, the venue was the Ms Universe Contest and Ms Sapre – then a lissome 21-year-old Mumbaikar full of rough edges (complete with a Dadar accent) – was the first Indian contestant to make it to the final round. Unfortunately, she managed to goof it up by actually being honest. When asked what she would change if she was the prime minister of the country for a year, she replied that she would improve the sports facilities available in the country. It was a practical, doable, and an honest opinion coming from her heart – after all, she was the daughter of an athlete and an athlete herself. Unfortunately, as her answer didn’t include any obscure references to world poverty and world peace, she lost.
I think Ms Sapre – who now lives in Italy with her ice-cream making husband – should be given the honour of being the final relay runner with the Queen’s baton. Think about it, she is glamorous, good looking and she once paid a big price for siding herself with the athletes of India. Now that her dream is close to reality, this is the least we could do.
Here’s a grainy video of the final round of that momentous contest with the winsome Ms Sapre so innocently talking about her life and dreams. She actually sounded real and non-plastic. Those were the days.