Prominent cycling coach Ruma Chattopadhyay died in a hit-and-run case early on Tuesday morning.
The tragic incident happened when chief coach Ruma, training the cyclists for the UCI juniors track World championship (in Glasgow from August 7 to 11) on the Noida Expressway, was hit from behind by a speeding car around 6 a.m.
“Other coaches assisting her immediately took her to the nearby Kailash Hospital, where she was declared brought-dead,” said Cycling Federation of India (CFI) Assistant Secretary V.N. Singh.
Ruma, a spinster, was 51 and is survived by her mother and five sisters. The Kolkata-based coach was employed with the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL). According to a CFI official, her body would be cremated in Kolkata.
Over the past few years Ruma, a Grade 1 coach and an Executive Member of the CFI, had been a prominent figure among the support staff of the Indian cycling team. She accompanied the team in important assignments like the Commonwealth Games, Asian Games and the Asian championship.
Under her guidance, the Indian junior cyclists had won medals in the Asian championship held here earlier this year.
Ruma, a former National champion, started her career in 1986 and competed for nearly a decade. CFI secretary Onkar Singh said Ruma’s demise was a big loss for the sport. “I have not only lost a colleague and a great friend, but also a great sportsperson and an honest and dedicated coach who always propagated high values and discipline (among the cyclists),” he said.