Ace gymnast Dipa Karmakar is planning to return the BMW car gifted to her by the auto giant's brand ambassador Sachin Tendulkar last month due to maintenance and other issues and replace it with another one. “Some news reports are saying we are returning the car. It's not true. We just want to replace it with another one as it difficult to drive and maintain such a vehicle in Agartala,” Dipa's father Dulal Karmakar told Private News Agency.
Dipa along with badminton star PV Sindhu, her coach P Gopichand and wrestler Sakshi Malik were presented with a luxury car each in August in appreciation for their performances in the Rio Olympics. She was gifted a BMW XI vehicle, which costs anywhere between Rs 30 to Rs 35 lakh, at a function in Hyderabad organised by the Badminton Association of Hyderabad. “Roads in Tripura are not good enough to drive such a vehicle. There are no capable drivers in Agartala town to drive a BMW and the company has no showroom or service centre in the state,” he said.
Karmakar said the family is talking with BMW and Badminton Association of Hyderabad officials to replace the BMW. He added they are yet to decide on the brand and car they will buy, but the choice will be limited to auto companies that have showroom and service centres in the gymnast's hometown.
“We have asked them to give us an amount equivalent to the price of the BMW car so that we can choose and purchase one in Agartala. They have agreed to do that and we expect the money soon,” he said. “If we were living in a metropolitan city like Kolkata or Mumbai, we would have been able to use the BMW. But it is not possible in Agartala.” Dipa wasn't available to comment as she was busy training for the Challenger's Cup in Germany next month.