Mangte Chungneijang Mary Kom, arguably India’s most popular boxer, turned 40 on March 1. However, it’s surprising to note that today is not her birthday. In fact, 24 November is supposed to be the actual date of birth of the legendary boxer.
Everyone came to know about this fact when the sportswomen won the World Women Boxing Championship on 24 November 2018.
“I feel very happy it is a special day (birthday). Couldn’t have asked for more,” Mary told Mail Today soon after her summit clash.
Asked about the error in her date of birth, Mary told the paper that it was a mistake made at the time of the submission of her documents by her uncle.
“The mistake happened during my childhood. My uncle filled up the form and nobody noticed it that time. We were also not that popular, so we let it go as it is. However, the year (1983) was right,” she added.
However, her birth date mentioned on the Olympic website and other official sites, including her Rajya Sabha membership card, is March 1.
Priyanka Chopra portrayed the boxer in Mary Kom, a 2014 Hindi language biographical film about her life. The movie is directed by Omung Kumar and was released on 5 September 2014.
The Indian boxing ace has since won a medal at all eight AIBA World Boxing Championships since its inception in 2001 (six golds, a silver and a bronze, most recently in 2019), risen to no.1 in the AIBA world rankings for a flyweight, and competed at the London 2012 Olympic Games, winning a bronze medal after being beaten by eventual champion Nicola Adams.
She is also the first Indian woman to win a gold medal at Asian Games in 2014, at the Commonwealth Games in 2018 and the only women to qualify for the 2012 Summer Olympics
Kom, mother of three young children, runs a sports club in her native Manipur, training youngsters to box for free, and she has become a member of the Rajya Sabha, campaigning on numerous issues for her fellow citizens.