April 2021 | 5-minute read
Tata Archery Academy was formally inaugurated by Dr J J Irani, Former Managing Director of Tata Steel, on October 4, 1996.
It did not take long for the Academy to produce results. The lives and hopes of many youngsters, especially from the Eastern Singhbhum area received a boost as the Academy continues to spot and nurture talent to perform at international standards. Over the last 24 years, the Archery Academy has trained more than 120 cadets, many of whom have represented the country at various levels.
As of date, archers from the academy have won five golds, six silver and five bronze medals while representing the country, and 24 gold, nine silver and five bronze medals at national events. Nine archers have been awarded the Arjuna Award, India's top sports honour and two coaches, the Dronacharya award, for excelling in coaching.
The Tata Archery Academy functions at the JRD Tata Sports Complex in Jamshedpur, and hosts excellent training facilities, including floodlit ranges for training at night.
While the roll of honour at the Academy includes Olympians, Asian and national level champions we bring you the stories of three individuals who have excelled in competitions and coaching.
Once a self-trained novice archer, Sanjeeva Singh, an Olympian and an SVP at Tata Realty, now mentors coaches and endeavours to develop archery in India.
In 1996, on receiving the Arjuna Award, Sanjeeva decided to retire from active play after having won 56 medals (including 20 gold) in his national and international sports career and having authored a book titled Modern Archery – Precept and Practice. But he wasn’t ready to drop his bow yet. India’s poor showing, at 14th place, at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, USA, prompted him to take up coaching. Read more about his journey and mission here.
Dharmenda Tiwary was awarded the prestigious Dronacharya Award 2020 for his lifetime contributions to archery. He is the third coach to receive this honour after Sanjeeva Singh and Purnima Mahto.
Starting as an assistant coach at the academy at its inception in 1996, he has trained over 250 archers including Arjuna awardees Jayanta Talukdar, Rahul Banerjee, Dola Banerjee, Chekrovolu Swuro and Atanu Das, as well as Padma Shri awardee Deepika Kumari. Read more about Dharmendra Tiwary here.
Madhumita Kumari is an Asian Games silver medalist. She was part of the Indian compound archery team at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta. Read the story of her journey as an archer: The Making of an Archer.