On 9th January 2000 a baby girl named Hima was born to Ranjith and Jonali Das at Kandhulimari village, near the small town of Dhing in Assam, India. This girl from a poor joint family of seventeen would go on to light a flame in Indian Athletics and inspire a historically patriarchal country to believe in their girls.
Hima Das came under the spotlight on winning her first gold medal in the 400m event, clocking 51.46 seconds at the IAAF World U20 Championships held in Tampere, Finland. At just 19 years, she has been breaking barriers in Indian Athletics which until her arrival had yet to shine at the international level. She is the current Indian National record holder in the 400m event with a time of 50.79 seconds, clocked at the 2018 Asian Games, Jakarta, Indonesia. Her most recent international achievement was her five consecutive gold medals run in Europe. Hima’s current goal is to run and qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, which has been postponed to 2021.
|Nickname||Dhing Express, Mon jai|
|Date Of Birth||9 January 2000|
|Birthplace||Kandhulimari village, Dhing, Nagaon, Assam|
|Hometown||Dhing, Nagaon, Assam|
|Educational Qualification||Graduate in May 2019|
|Hobbies||Playing football, Shooting, Watching Movies and Listening to Music|
|Height (approx)||in centimetres- 165 cm|
in meter- 1.65 m
in feet & inches- 5’5”
|Weight (approx)||in Kilogram- 50 kg|
in pounds- 110 lbs
Education & Career
Hima Das studied at Dhing Public School, graduating in May 2019. She secured first division in the Arts and Humanities stream. She scored a total of 349 marks out of 500 with letter marks (80 or above) in Assamese language. She is presently focusing on her athletic career and has not mentioned furthering her education.
Track and Field
|International Debut||IAAF World U20 Championship (2018)|
Young Indian of the Year 2018 (GQ India)
Hima’s entry into athletics was not a certainty from the beginning. She was primarily interested in playing football, which she would play with boys. Her physical education teacher- Shamshul Sheikh, who saw her sprinting while playing football advised her to switch to track. Her decision to switch sports was mainly because of the lack of future in football for girls in India. She would practice on muddy football fields for lack of a running track. Her superiority in sprinting was first noted at a district meet.
Despite lack of training facilities and any equipment whatsoever, she won bronze at the state meet, later reaching the 100m finals at Junior Nationals. Her first Asian event was the 200m at the 2017 Asian Youth Championships, Bangkok. She finished seventh in the tournament with a time of 24.72 seconds, which luckily qualified her for the World Youth Championships to be held in Nairobi. There, Hima finished fifth with an overall time of 24.31 seconds. On 12 July 2018, Hima created history by becoming the first Indian sprinter to win gold at an international track event. and won her first ever gold medal in the 400m final at the World U-20 Championships 2018, Tampere, Finland. Clocking 51.46 seconds, she accelerated past three of her competitors in the last 100 meters to win. She set a new Indian national record in 400m clocking 51.00 in the first heat of the 2018 Asian Games.
On 26 August 2018, she bettered the national record to 50.79 seconds in the 400m final of the Asian Games. After being sidelined most of 2019, Hima stunned everyone with her gold run in Europe in just 20 days. However, due to aggravation of her back, which had surfaced in August 2018, Hima had to miss the big track event in the world- Athletics World Championships. She is presently recuperating at the National Institute of Sports (NIS) in Patiala. She intends to compete at the Tokyo 2021 Olympics.
|2017 Asian Youth Championships, Bangkok||200m||7th||24.72|
|2017 IAAF World U18 Championships||200m||5th||24.31|
|2018 Commonwealth Games, |
Gold coast, Australia
|World U-20 Championships 2018, Tampere, Finland||400m||1st||51.46|
|2018 Asian Games||400m |
4×400m mixed relay
|Poznan Athletics Grand Prix,Poland||200m||1st||23.65|
|Kutno Athletics Meet, Poland||200m||1st||23.97|
|Kladno Athletics Meet, |
|NovéMěsto, Czech Republic||400m||1st||52.09|
She was awarded the prestigious Arjuna Award by President Kovind on 25th September 2019 for excellence in athletics at just 19 years.
The Government of Assam has ordained her as the state’s brand ambassador for sports.
UNICEF-India assigned her as India’s first ever youth ambassador. Most importantly, the Indian government has announced that they would provide Hima ‘end-to-end’ funding until the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Personal Life and Family
Her parents are members of the indigenous Kaibarta community and practice farming to provide for their family. Being a fast runner too, her father was in complete support of her athletic career, however, her mother held certain reservations in the beginning as being an athlete required a lot of travelling on her own. She comes from a humble background where her first pair of spikes were generic and till then, she had been running barefoot. She has four siblings and is the fifth child. She has mentioned her parents as her inspiration in social media.
Family, Siblings & Boyfriend
|Family||Father– Ronjit Da|
Brother– Basanta (younger)
Sisters- Rinti Das, Barsha
- Hima’s first pair of spikes were generic, so she wrote Adidas on them. After Hima won the sensational 400m in Finland, the top German brand chose her as their brand ambassador and later made, custom-made shoes for her that have her name on one side and ‘create history’ on the other.
- She prefers to focus on her sport than engage in relationships of any manner.
- She came out in support of domestic helpers and workers, who have been affected by the Coronavirus-caused lockdown through an initiative by Edelweiss.
- Hima’s role model is Sachin Tendulkar, meeting whom was the best moment of her life according to her.
To Sum Hima Das
Hima is an inspiration to girls in India and all over the world as she has proven that situation does not define or break us. Despite her slow start and hardships, she worked hard and has made a name for herself in the athletic world. All of India stands with her and wishes her the very best as she prepares for the Olympics.