"I want to be India's Manny Pacquaio. It would be great if I can be as good as him because I am not giving up boxing. That's my first love, will always be. That's my identity and I am not going to give it up," said Vijender Singh Beniwal as he takes his first steps into politics. The Haryana native and the current WBO Asia Pacific Super Middleweight Champion is the first Indian boxer to win an Olympic medal and is an inspiration to many. On Monday, Vijender Singh was nominated by the Indian National Congress for the South Delhi constituency.
Manny Pacquaio serves as the Senator of the Philippines. He is the only eight-division world champion in the history of boxing. Even role models like Vijender Singh need role models. Vijender Singh will be up against the BJP's sitting MP Ramesh Bidhuri and Aam Aadmi Party's Raghav Chadha - will he knock them out? It remains to be seen.
"Even if I make it to Parliament, I will identify myself as boxer Vijender Singh and will continue to juggle my responsibilities," continued Vijender Singh. Sources told News18 that Congress depends on Singh to bring in votes in a constituency that is chiefly made up of Jats and Gujars.
Singh hopes to tackle issues of the youth, specifically focussing on employment and sports. "I am genuinely concerned about employment, which I think is a prominent issue for the youth. And being a sportsperson, I am also keen on working towards developing sports infrastructure. It's about time we had good infrastructure so that budding athletes can actually flourish," PTI quoted Vijender Singh. Congress didn't win a single seat in Delhi during the 2014 Lok Sabha Elections. When asked why he choose INC, he said, "I relate to the ideology and the leadership."
"As is propagated by our leadership, I want to be a friend of the electorate. I don't wish to be the neta that visits once in five years. I am not going to do rallies or road shows. I am going to connect with the voters spontaneously," Singh further added.