Indian postal department dedicates a golden postbox to Tokyo Olympics champion Neeraj Chopra

The gold-coloured postbox has been placed by the Indian post office at Khandra in Panipat, Haryana – Neeraj Chopra’s hometown.

By Utathya Nag
Picture by 2021 Getty Images

The Indian post office - the country’s public postal service - has installed a gold-painted postbox in Neeraj Chopra's hometown in Haryana to mark the javelin thrower's gold medal win at the Tokyo Olympics.

A postbox is usually a red-coloured, barrel-shaped container placed in common public locations where people can drop their personal letters - envelopes or postcards - to be collected and delivered by the government post and telegraph office.

At Tokyo 2020, Neeraj Chopra created history as he won the gold medal in men's javelin throw with an attempt measuring 87.58m. He is the first Indian track and field athlete to win an Olympic medal.

Neeraj Chopra's medal was also India’s second-ever individual gold at the Olympics, after shooter Abhinav Bindra's triumph at Beijing 2008.

The golden postbox has been installed at Khandra in Panipat, Haryana.

'In honour of javelin throw gold medal winner Tokyo Olympics 2020 Mr Neeraj Chopra,' a message on the postbox reads.

Neeraj Chopra has received multiple accolades and felicitations since returning from Tokyo. He received a golden retriever puppy named Tokyo from fellow Indian Olympic champion Abhinav Bindra in September.

The golden postbox, for Chopra, is quite unique. The department of post and telegraph has often celebrated sporting achievements or events with postage stamps and coins, but a postbox is something new.

The Indian post office was first formed in 1776 under British rule and was formally established in 1854. With a lot of history and emotion behind them, the post-office still remains an integral part of the common man’s life in India.

After his Tokyo feat, expectations on Neeraj Chopra will be high in 2022. With the Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and the world championships on the calendar this year, the Indian ace is braced for a busy season ahead. He is also aiming to breach the 90m mark this year.

Neeraj Chopra is currently at a training camp at the Chula Vista Elite Athlete Training Centre in California, USA, with coach Klaus Bartoneitz and physiotherapist Ishaan Marwaha to prepare for the upcoming season.

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