Well-wishers in India and world help me be who I am: Dutee

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New Delhi: Dutee Chand said that her well-wishers in India and across the world has given her the motivation to be “unapologetically” who she is. The 24-year-old sprinter from Odisha had to get past a ban from World Athletic due to her high levels of testosterone, which she successfully challenged at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

However, before all of that, she had to get past society’s taboo around a girl taking part in sports.

“In the past it was just a dream when girls like me got into the team, I used to get taunted by the boys. What will you do by running, your job is to get married, have children, run the family. Then why do you want to run… they used to say,” she said in a video interview conducted by Twitter to celebrate International Women’s Day that is coming up on March 8.

“When I started performing well in my village at the school level it made me believe that I could perform well and go further. When I started winning medals at nationals and for the first time, at the international level despite being a junior I won a medal in the senior category, it filled me with confidence,” she said.

“My well-wishers in India and across the world have given me the motivation and strength over the years to be unapologetically who I am. It gives me happiness to be able to connect with my fans and friends, and let them know exactly how hard I have been working. I hope more Indian women use Twitter to speak up for themselves and get support from people and authorities across India.”

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