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Devendra Jhajharia: An Inspiring Journey Of The Golden Paralympian

Your physical incapability can never decide your boundaries. Devendra Jhajharia, the 35-year-old Indian javelin thrower is the aptest example for the previous statement. The Rajasthani Jat belongs to the Churu district in Rajasthan, India. Jhajaria lost his left hand in an accident in his childhood, but his passion for athletics has taken him where he is right now. The only Indian Paralympian to win two gold medals in a tournament like Paralympics. Let's have a look at the journey of this maestro. Also, read- Ram Singh Yadav: 2nd Marathon Runner From India To Qualify For The Summer Olympics

It all began when...

Jhajharia was spotted by Dronacharya Awardee coach R.D. Singh while competing at a school sports day, and from that point is coached by Singh. 

In 2002, Jhajharia won the gold medal in the 8th FESPIC Games in South Korea.

Soon after getting spotted by his coach, Jhajaria started his glorious career with gold in the 8th FESPIC Games in South Korea in 2002. 

Jhajharia participated in the 2004 Athens Paralympics in which he set a new world record

At the Paralympics in 2004 Jhajharia qualified for his first Summer Paralympic Games representing India at Athens. In the tournament, he set a new world record with a distance of 62.15m eclipsing the old one of 59.77m. The throw gave him the gold medal, and he became only the second gold medalist at the Paralympics for his country (India's first gold medal came from Murlikant Petkar).

Another Gold medal in Rio Paralympics, surpassing his own record.

Further, in 2016, he won a gold medal at the 2016 IPC Athletics Asia-Oceania Championship in Dubai. At the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, he won the gold medal in the men's javelin throw F46 event, bettering his own 2004 record with a world-record throw of 63.97 metres

Awards and recognitions

The two-time gold medal Paralympian is felicitated with FICCI Para Sportsperson of the Year (2014). Padma Shri (2012; first Paralympian to be so honoured). Arjuna Award (2004).

The Indian Medal winners in the Paralympics of 2016.

From left to right, Mariyappan Thangavelu (Gold medal), Deepa Malik (Silver medal), Devendra Jhajharia (Gold medal) and Varun Bhati (Bronze medal).