Ayesha Noor aka Kolkata's 'Golden Girl' has been making her country proud ever since she was 16-years-old. The wonder kid began learning karate from a very tender age and subsequently evolved into a champion of the sport.
Today, Ayesha has won numerous medals and has been conferred with several awards from International karate associations. In 2017, the United States of America honoured Ayesha Noor as 'Hero of Gender Equality' at the American Centre in New Delhi. Not so long ago, the Times of India also honoured Ayesha as 'Times Women Heroes Award' on 7th June 2019.
Recently, Ayesha added another feather to her cap when she was selected to represent India at the International sports meet in Thailand.
Ayesha Noor's journey so far has been arduous yet endearing. She has been suffering from epileptic seizures since childhood. Her father's demise in 2010 left Noor's mother with four children and no money to support the family. Her mother, Shakila Begum, became the bread earner of the family and supported Ayesha by sewing clothes at home.
Ayesha's health problems and financial constraints didn't deter her from following her dreams. She developed an affinity for Karate when she was just 6-years-old. It was Ayesha's coach MA Ali, who took her under his wing from the slums of Beniakupur and groomed her into a karate champion. Ever since, this karate wonder kid has won gold thrice representing India, the first time in Mumbai in 2010 and twice in Bangkok in 2013 and 2015.
Ayesha has been an inspiration for millions of girls. Moreover, she has taken approximately 100 slum girls under her wing to teach them self-defense for free. She practices with them frequently at Ramleela grounds in Moulali area in Kolkata. Her vision is to empower women and make them self-sufficient.
Earlier, in an interview, her coach MA Ali expressed that he was profoundly proud of his student, "I am very proud of Ayesha. She has this vision to help other girls across the world for free and I hope we will get all the support." In the past, Union Minister Maneka Gandhi also tweeted calling Ayesha an inspiration to other women.
Ayesha's inspirational life story has also made it into a documentary, which traces her journey from the slums in Kolkata to winning gold at the international level despite suffering from epilepsy. Titled Girl Connected, the documentary was made by the International Television series and was screened globally and telecasted by Doordarshan.
Ayesha and four of her pupils have now been selected to represent India at the International sports meet, 2019, to be held in Bangkok where Ayesha will be given the International sports award in the month of September in Thailand.
Ayesha is super excited about the upcoming event but is sad as she might not be able to make it for lack of financial support. Despite her success and achievements, the state government has been unable to collect the requisite funds to provide financial assistance to the karate champion. However, she and her coach are both banking on generous people to support her pupils to make their passports and fly to Thailand.
We really hope that Ayesha would find success in all her future endeavours!