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Dejected Bula plans to launch her swimming academy with private sponsorship

951   //    29 Mar 2013, 14:51 IST

Bula Chowdhury, the queen of long-distance swimming from Bengal, is finally trying to accumulate money privately to fulfill her dream of launching a swimming academy in Bengal. Her approach to the state government as well as to the Union sports ministry for more than 15 years has found no response. Even when she was MLA of the last left-front government, she was deceived by her own party minister. Former state Urban Development minister Asoke Bhattacharya had allotted a land to her beside the eastern bypass, at the east of Kolkata. And, Bula, elated with the gift, had also found an Australian corporate house as the key sponsor of her desired swimming academy. But, at the time of agreement on that land, Bula found that it had already been allotted to the a co-operative, being run by the state fishery department.

Bula, who has completed all the seven toughest channels in the world, including the English Channel twice, got frustrated that she stopped thinking over her academy. And, simultaneously, a severe disease attacked the former international swimmer. Her pulse rate often dropped, and the doctor advised her not to swim again. But according to Bula, she had almost overcome the deadliness of the disease after resuming Ayurvedic treatment as well as yoga practice for around six months. And now, again, Bula has started initiating discussions with private sponsors so that her dream can be achieved. Bula said, “The present government also has done nothing for me so far. I have appealed to the present state sports minister so many times. And each time he has only given me the verbal promise. Now, I am planning to buy a land at the outskirts of Kolkata and start my swimming academy. I know it is going to be too tough. But I cannot keep myself away from launching the swimming academy. And I must make it in Bengal as whatever the laurels I have got, all from Bengal.”

It has been learnt that Bula has preliminary talks with Sahara Group regarding her project. At the same time, the former international swimmer has already approached a few more corporate houses, based outside Bengal. When asked about any plans to return to swimming any more, Bula smiled, saying, :”Yes, I have now the only wish as a long-distance swimmer. That is to cross English Channel for another time as a senior citizen. Now I am a 40 year-old. After reaching 60, I will try to cross English Channel once again.”

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