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City’s kickboxing pride Pooja Harsha wins Women Achievers’ Award

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Mysuru: Mysuru’s Pooja Harsha, Chairperson of World Association of Kickboxing Organisation (WAKO), India Women Committee, has been awarded with the prestigious Karnataka Women Achievers’ Award along with other women achievers.

Pooja, also the general secretary of Karnataka Kickboxing Sports Association, was felicitated with the award at Bengaluru where Sandalwood producer Ashwini Puneeth Rajkumar was the chief guest. The award is a recognition for scores of unsung women achievers, who fight every odd in their way to be excellent in their chosen field.

There were over 4,300 nominations received this year and a panel of jury had a tough time choosing one each from around 20 categories for the award.

Pooja Harsha

Pooja Harsha is a name to reckon with in kickboxing in Mysuru and India. It was not easy for Pooja to beat the general mindset that “kickboxing is not for girls.” But, she proved these notions wrong when she became the first woman from Mysuru to win Black Belt Fourth degree and Second degree (Black Belt) in K1 Style. She beat around 200 competitors to be the first South Indian Woman National Coach. Not just that. She is also the first woman from South India to be selected as an International Referee. Today, she has introduced kickboxing in schools under WAKO in 18 districts.

She has brought the overall trophy for the State three times consecutively, making Karnataka, the strongest team in South India. Karnataka now stands third among 28 states/UTs.

Daughter of Janaki Das and Hari Das, Pooja said she would dedicate the award to her father Hari Das, who inspired her to take up karate and her husband Harsha Shankar for encouraging her to learn kickboxing. The couple run Academy of Self Defense in Mysuru where they train kickboxers.

-Team Mysoorunews

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