Kianoush Rostami, Iran's gold medal weightlifter in Rio's 2016 Olympic Games who hails from the earthquake-ravished city of Kermanhshah, has decided to auction his prized possession.
His plan is to donate the proceeds to families affected by the 7.3-magnitude tremor that shook Iran this weekend, according to PressTV.
“This calamity has stricken me with deep grief,” wrote the 26-year old sportsman, adding that he “personally owed a duty to make my own contribution.” He went on to affirm that he freely chooses “to auction the 2016 Olympic Games gold medal, and donate the proceedings to my compatriots.”
Competing in the men's 85-kilogram weight category, Rostami became the first Iranian to take home gold in the 2016 Olympics, lifting a world record 396 kilograms from the ground to his shoulders, regaining his strength and composure before hoisting it above his head. The feat eclipsed his own world mark by one kilogram, securing his victory over China's Tian Tao.
Latest figures indicate that almost 430 people lost their lives in the earthquake and over 7,000 were injured, PressTV reported. Roughly 12,000 homes were also razed to the ground. Aid institutions throughout Iran, as well as relief workers, have been busy round the clock attending to the injured and survivors.
Less than 48 hours after the earthquake hit Iraq and Iran, authorities in Iran have called off rescue efforts, saying there’s little chance of finding survivors in the country’s quake-prone western region. “The rescue operations in Kermanshah province have ended,” said the head of Iran’s Emergency Medical Services Pir-Hossein Kolivand.