New Delhi, Dec 6: A Kashmiri girl, whose picture of throwing stones had been highlighted by national media, is now inspiring women in Jammu and Kashmir as she has become the captain of the state’s football team. Her journey from being a stone-pelter to a successful footballer is inspirational. She met Home Minister Rajnath Singh for the promotion of sports among girls in the state.

Afsan Ashiq got the spotlight when her picture hurling stones surfaced. She was noticed because of the picture. She met Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, who helped her. The 23-year-old is now the captain and the goalkeeper of the Jammu and Kashmir women’s team and is competing in the Indian Women’s League. She also plays for a club in Mumbai.

She, along with her 22-member team and coaches, met Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and requested him to intervene in starting a Sports Authority of India (SAI) Institute in Kashmir to promote sports among women.

“I was impressed by how patiently a Union minister heard the issues raised by us. We sought better sports infrastructure in J&K. The home minister called up J&K CM in front of us and told her to meet us when we get back to Srinagar,” Afshan told TOI.

She gives credit to the Jammu and Kashmir chief minister for her success, saying the leader supported the women’s football team in a big way. She also said that she was proud of leading the Jammu and Kashmir team.

Remembering her stone-pelting incident, she said she didn’t regret the incident as the abusive language of Jammu and Kashmir cops had provoked her into taking violent form of protest.