Young talent Tilottama Sen was among the shooters from the State felicitated by Karnataka State Rifle Association (KSRA) at Karnataka Olympic Bhavan here on Monday.
Tilottama, 14, had won an individual bronze and team gold medals in the 10m air rifle junior women’s event in the recent ISSF World Shooting Championship held at Cairo, Egypt. The teenager also won an individual silver at the 2022 National Games.
Meghana Sajjanar (10m air rifle team bronze, ISSF World Shooting Championship), T.S. Divya (10m air rifle individual bronze, National Games) and Srijay Ranjan (10m air rifle team gold and individual silver medal, 2019 Asian Shooting Championship) were the others honoured.
Curiously, while Tilottama, Divya and Srijay received cash prizes of ₹80,000, ₹20,000 and ₹75,000 respectively, Meghana was ignored. A KSRA official explained that cash prizes were reserved for medal winners in individual events only.
On the same stage, Karnataka Olympic Association (KOA) President K. Govindraj announced an award of ₹25,000 each for the two world shooting championship medallists, Tilottama and Meghana. The KSRA is affiliated to KOA.
Tilottama stated that winning a silver at the National Games boosted her confidence ahead of the World Championship. It has been a rapid ascent for Tilottama, who took up the sport only two years ago. “My father suggested that I take up the sport as I wanted to stay occupied during the COVID-19 lockdown,” Tilottama, a student of Bluebell Public School, said on Monday.
Meghana stated that she is focussing on keeping her mind free of clutter when on the shooting range. “Shooting is a mental sport, where a lot of thoughts can run through your mind. I’m working on staying focussed on the process,” Meghana said.
Tilottama and Meghana will compete in the Asian Airgun Championship, which commences at Daegu (South Korea) on November 9.
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