Elvis Ali Hazarika: A tale of the Resilience and Endurance

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Sharing his future projects to TIME8, Hazarika revealed that he is targeting another world record next year
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Guwahati: Elvis Ali Hazarika, who grew up to be one of the most successful swimmers from Assam, added one more feather to his cap on Wednesday by becoming the first Assamese, lone person from the northeastern region, to cross the North Channel by swimming it in Relay from Northern Ireland to Scotland. 

He also became the third and the oldest Indian swimmer to achieve the feat. He is 40.

Along with Hazarika West Bengal’s Rimo Saha also becomes the first Asian relay team to cross the North Channel. The duo has achieved the feat in 14 hours and 38 minutes.

“I have been waiting for this day since a long time. After a lot of efforts and hours of pushing myself to work harder, every day, I successfully have become the first Assamese (North East) to cross the North Channel by swimming it in Relay Northern Ireland to Scotland. We had to go through a lot of challenges. Especially, the huge Jellyfish that was accompanying us all the way!” said Hazarika to TIME8.

But the story of his success began much before Wednesday when Elvis started rigorous training to swim beating strong winds and choppy waters of the North Channel on Tuesday. More than physical training and techniques of swimming, for Elvis the toughest part was preparing himself for the challenge mentally.

 “Getting prepared mentally for all the challenges we might face during the main event. Not to forget the jellyfish, dolphins and seals. Let’s hope I can fulfil my dream,” said Elvis in a Facebook post before the swim.

He added, “We are the first Asian Relay team to cross the North Channel and I am the oldest swimmer from India to have crossed the North Channel to clock a time of 14hrs 38mins. A dream comes the true and a proud moment for all Indians and Assamese people.”

Hazarika who started swimming at the age of one and a half and swam across Dighalipukhuri in Guwahati at the age of four had participated in the Asia Pacific Championship at the age of nine and represented India in the SAF Games.

But that’s not all. Going to his past records, Elvis had crossed 29 km of the English Channel in an attempt to swim across it in June 2018. Also, he is the only Assamese to swim this distance on the channel till now.

He also set himself to become the first swimmer from Assam to cross the Catalina Channel in the United States of America in the year 2019. Elvis began swimming across the Catalina Channel from the US to reach Mexico. According to media reports, he had crossed a distance of 80 km in 10 hours and 59 minutes.

In November last year, he had become the first Assamese to successfully swim from Dharamtar Jetty to the Gateway of India, the Arabian Sea, the total length of which is around 38 kilometres.

Earlier, this year, he had achieved a feat by becoming the first individual from North East India to cover the Indo Arabian Gateway Mumbai Circle swim with his relay team. Hazarika covered the entire length of 200 kilometres by swimming with a record time of 53 hours.

Sharing his future projects, Hazarika revealed that he is targeting another world record next year.

“I will be swimming English Channel on June 2023. It will be the longest swim covering- 1500 km from Gujrat – Goa – Mumbai. The total swim will be 15 days. That will be a World Record Swim,” added Hazarika.

Also Read: Mission Aparaajay: ‘Jalkonwar’ Elvis Ali Hazarika sets sights on North Channel and English Channel

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