In a feat, that can be quite remarkable, the twin sister pair of Tashi and Nancy Malik have become the fastest South Asians to finish the 'Explorers Grand Slam'. The twins from Haryana completed this feat by climbing the highest peaks in all seven continents and also reached the north and south pole on skis.
Speaking about this, Nancy, who is the younger of the two twins said that, it was an extremely difficult task but in the end, it was all worth it.
“The feat was a tough one, but worth the effort. There were times when it was difficult even to stand, but we stay put. Where there were many reasons for us to stop, there was only one to keep us going...our passion," she told PTI.
However, while, on one side, their achievement is something for all of us to be proud of, the fact that they received very little support from outside, have created a financial hole at home.
"Mountaineering is a great sport but it has put my parents in debt. Though we scaled many heights for our country, not even a single penny has been provided by the government,” the duo said.
However, they seemed hopeful of getting sponsors, following their meeting with Minister of State Kiren Rijiju.
“Mountaineering is still not included as a sport. It is defined differently by various states. Thus, our chances of getting sponsors are bleak, but we are hopeful after Rijiju sir's words of appreciation," Tashi added.
The girls scaled Mt.Kilimanjaro, situated at a height of 5895m, on the 3rd of July, thus completing the monumental feat.
But while the Indian government may not have provided them any help financially, the Government of New Zealand have come out in support of the two 24-year-olds. They have decided to provide the two with a sports scholarship.
"We are delighted to provide a sports scholarship to the young achievers. We have offered them to travel to New Zealand and study a year-long course on Sports and Exercise Psychology," Michale Appleton, the Deputy High Commissioner, New Zealand, said.
Our focus is on raising the bar: Tashi
The girls also took the opportunity to further add that the achievements weren't only theirs but symbolized what a girl child can do, if given the right chances to showcase their abilities.
“We are happy to add another moment of pride and glory for the Indian girl child. For now we are focused on raising the bar of performance so that the girls can claim their rightful place of dignity and respect in our society.
Our achievements are not just our own. It is a message to the society that binds down girls to the four walls of their homes," Tashi said.