A high-ranking senior Indian politician has namechecked Rangers as they praise leading female athlete and footballer Bala Devi, who plays for the Rangers Women.

The talented forward, 30, was called up to the Indian senior team as a 15-year-old and retains a special status as a leading figure in Indian sport.

As a result, India’s Minister of State for Youth Affairs & Sports (Independent Charge) and Minister of State for Minority Affairs, Kiren Rijiju, took to Twitter to congratulate Devi on her progress at Rangers.

Describing Bala Devi as the “pride of Indian football”, Rijiju said:

“Good going Miss Bala Devi, the talented and pride of Indian Football at the Scottish Women’s Premier League Club Rangers!”

Rijiju has over 840k followers on his Twitter account and this highlights the global commercial impact of not just signing Devi, but in investing in the club’s Women’s team.

In a nation of over 1bn people for Devi to be described as the “pride” of the nation’s footballing culture highlights just how big a name the forward is in Indian sport.

Devi joined Rangers in February this year on an 18-month contract as the club incorporated the women’s side into the Ibrox footballing department and began building a serious team.

Devi’s signature is symbolic of a new era at Ibrox concerning the Rangers women with her 52 goals in 58 international games testament to her immense ability.

The club will hope the forward can go on to inspire this Rangers side to victory in the SWPL this season as Rangers look to take a pioneering role in women’s football in Scotland.

The talented Bala Devi will be hoping to achieve her European footballing dreams with the exciting project happening at Rangers and the club’s women’s team. (Photo by Sanket Wankhade/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Devi’s involvement isn’t Rangers’ only foray into the expanding Indian football market either.

The Ibrox side have also signed a two-year partnership deal with Indian Super League champions Bengaluru in an exciting cross-continent partnership.

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