New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: An 85-year-old woman is winning hearts with her exception stick swinging skills. Pune's Shantabai Pawar, also fondly called Ajji Maa by locals, has aced the traditional art form of 'Lathi Kathi'.

The octogenarian has been performing this lesser-known art form since her childhood. "I'm doing it since I was 8. My father taught me to work hard. People mostly remain indoors due to #COVID, so I clang utensil to alert them when I perform," she told the news agency ANI.


A video in which the old woman Shantabai Pawar is seen impeccably acing the years-old tradition of Lathi Kathi art is doing rounds on social media. Setting up a courageous show in front of the audience in a street, the 85-year-old left netizens astonished. The video was widely circulated on the microblogging site Twitter and caught the attention of Bollywood celebrity Riteish Deshmukh as well. Impressed by her art, Riteish tweeted "Warrior Aaji Maa...Can someone please get me the contact details of her?" on one of her videos going viral.

Check out the video here:

Amazed by the courage of the woman, netizens also lauded her as a fighter and there was an outpouring reaction on her videos.
“She is an absolute fighter and deserves a chance to train her super lathi skills to all,” one of the users wrote.
Another Twitter user wanted her to be awarded the Civilian Awards.

According to an online website Maharashtra Times, she is performing the art of Dombari lathi kathi to earn a livelihood for herself and her seven orphaned grandchildren. Due to the nationwide lockdown for the past few months, the survival of the family has become difficult and after starving for several nights during the pandemic, the grandmother took to the streets and began performing the art of swinging a stick. Onlookers and neighbours caught her in action and recorded her performance which then became viral on social media. The grandmother earned praises all across.

Shantabai said, “Social media has earned me a lot of fame which I couldn’t earn playing the sport in my youth. However, appreciation and rewards do not fill the stomach,” in a statement to Maharashtra Times.
Requesting citizens with folded hands, Shantabai asked people to help her as she wants to teach her granddaughter.
“If you like my art, help me,” the 85-year-old added further.

Shantabai hails from Vaidwadi Gosavi Vasti in Hadapsar town which located in eastern Pune City. Defying all the age norms, the resilient old woman is winning hearts all over.

Posted By: Simran Babbar