The trend of learning shooting has catched up among Mysoreans. Quite a good number of people are learning shooting from Mysore District Rifle Association, which is providing air gun training. In the last three years the association has produced several shooters and have won more than 300 gold, silver, bronze medals in zonal level, state level, and pre national levels.
Thanks for the efforts of MS Suresh, an retired Army Junior Commissioner Officer, who set up the association to train and develop young talent to make them ready for Olympics. Nearly 450 people including doctors, engineers, those working in IT/BT sector, teachers, and people from all walks of life are practicing shooting at the center located in Ramakrishna Nagar.
Under Suresh’s coaching and relentless efforts several aspiring shooters of MDRA have become state level shooters, while some have even progressed to compete in National Level. The Upcoming Pistol Shooters of MDRA are Rakshit Shastry and P Jayanth; Rifle shooters Manjesh Mandanna, R Vinod, D Punneth Kumar.
Hangud Government College Assistant Professor Balu who is practicing shooting from last two years, has won two gold medals and has played in national levels. He is undergoing rigorous training to take in the olympics. He says: ‘The government should given financial assistance for sports persons and aim to win medals in Olympics.’
Maharaja College Student Vivek who has own three gold medals and one silver medal in the ‘Open Rifle Championship’ held on May 5, said that his aim is to become national level shooter and want to bring gold for India in Olympics.
Nandini another learner said: ‘Have learnt balancing, and aiming improves concentration. Height, sharpness, aim, concentration, mind calculations, are needed.
Am enjoying lot learning shooting. Unlike other games, this also requires lot of practice to achieve in aiming.’
A native of Arkalgud Taluk, Hassan district, Suresh has won 17 gold, 11 silver and 9 bronze medals in shooting. He has created second national record in International Shooting Sport Federation. He has given coaching for Indian Army for fives years. He has even given training for Shooter Vijay Kumar, who won the silver medal in the Summer Olympics 2012. He says: ‘My aim is to produce a shooters from Karnataka to win gold in Olympics.’
Going down the memory lane, he said: ‘Sports meet will be conducted for Army officers every year. Senior officers noticed am good in shooting and provided me training in Army Rifle Association. Later was sent to Shooting Center in Mohu, Madhya Pradesh where top shooters of Army personnel will be given training. Have undergone coaching from Russian, American, Hungary coaches. Later, I took part in several shooting competitions and won medals.’
‘When I was deputed as NCC officer to Mysore for the 13th Karnataka Battalion, was conducting classes for children in the leisure periods, and used to inform them about basics of shooting, its importance, scope for shooting, etc and used to create curious among young minds about shooting. One day a girl came and expressed her desire to learn shooting, whereas no centers to train. I promised the girl, will return to Mysuru and set up Association. After taking VRS, I shifted to Mysuru and established MDRA,” added 41-year-old Suresh who has served in Indian Army for 25 years.
Mysore District Rifle Association was started on August 15, 2013 with a vision to develop sports shooting talent in and around Mysore. Shooters from MDRA have represented Mysore District in State and Open Championships with remarkable results, while some shooters have also represented the state in National events.