This post was originally published on 1 November 2015.
Indian para-athletes Devendra Jhajharia and Amit Kumar Saroha made the nation proud by bagging silver medals in the IPC Athletics World Championships held in Doha. Yesterday, the 15-member Indian team ended the campaign with two silver medals.
Indian Paralympic gold medalist Devendra Jhajharia continued his good form by securing a silver medal at the Javelin F46. The second-place finish also guaranteed him a spot in next year’s Paralympic event.
The 35-year old won gold two years ago in the tournament’s 2013 edition, which was held in Lyon, France. Devendra notched up a best throw of 59.06, to finish behind China’s Guo Chunliang at the Sulam Bin Hamad Stadium.
He also holds the IPC world record for this particular event and will be disappointed not to secure top spot, this time around.
In 2004, the Rajasthan-based athlete became only the second Indian to win a Paralympic gold medal, after Murlikant Petkar struck gold by setting the world record in the 1972 edition.
He was bestowed with the Arjuna award and prestigious Padma Shri in 2012
Amit Kumar Saroha
Amit Kumar clinched silver in men’s club throw F51 event with an effort of 25.44m, behind Serbia’s Zeljko Dimitrijevic who won gold in a championship record of 26.29m.
The silver-winning effort also gave Amit a berth for next year’s Rio Paralympic Games.
The 30-year old from Haryana’s Bayanpur started off as a national-level hockey player before he was paralysed in a car accident in 2007, aged only 22.
He spent six months in hospital, depressed after doctors said he was quadriplegic with legs full paralysed and arms paralysed to the extent of 80 per cent.
But meeting wheelchair athlete Jonathan Signworth changed his life altogether. He urged him to pursue wheelchair rugby and they toured India promoting it. Amit then shifted focus to individual events like discuss throw, after meeting his idol Arun Sondhi, another wheelchair athlete.
He had won two medals in the 2014 Asian Para games: Gold in men’s club throw and silver in men’s discus throw.
He received the Arjuna Award in 2013, as well as the Godfrey Bravery award in the Mind of Steel category. He was also presented with the Bheem Award for Excellence in Sports in 2014 from the Haryana Government in India.