Olympic 2020

India at Paralympics: History and past medal winners

Tokyo Paralympics will be the 16th edition of the Summer Paralympics and India is going to feature in the event for the 12th time. India is sending its largest continent with as many as 54 athletes are going to participate in 9 different sports.

Number of athletes to have represented India at Paralympics in every edition;

1. 1968 – 10
2. 1972 – 10
3. 1984 – 5
4. 1988 – 2
5. 1992 – 9
6. 1996 – 9
7. 2000 – 4
8. 2004 – 12
9. 2008 – 5
10. 2012 – 10
11. 2016 – 19
12. 2020 – 54

India has won 12 medals in the Paralympics history which have come from 9 different athletes. Para-swimmer Murlikant Petkar was India’s first-ever medal winner at the Paralympics. He won Gold in Men’s 50m freestyle 3 events. Joginder Singh Bedi won 3 medals in 1984, making him the only Indian athlete with 3 Paralympics medals and only with multiple medals in a single edition. Devendra Jhajharia is the only athlete with 2 Gold medals at the Paralympics. He bagged the yellow metal in 2004 and then in 2016 in the Men’s Javelin F46 event.

Medal winners for India at Paralympics:
1. Murlikant Petkar, 1972- Gold in Men’s 50m freestyle 3 swimming
2. Bhimrao Kesarkar, 1984 – Silver in Men’s javelin L6
3. Joginder Singh Bedi, 1984 – Silver in men’s shot put L6, Bronze in men’s javelin L6, Bronze in men’s discus throw L6
4. Devendra Jhajharia, 2004 & 2016 – Gold in men’s javelin F46
5. Rajinder Singh Rahelu, 2004 – Bronze in men’s 56kg powerlifting
6. Girisha Nagarajegowda, 2012 – Silver in men’s high jump F42
7. Mariappan Thangavelu, 2016 – Gold in men’s high jump F42
8. Deepa Malik, 2016 – women’s shot put F53
9. Varun Singh Bhati, 2016 – Bronze in men’s high jump F42

Joginder Singh and Devendra Jhajharia are the only two athletes with multiple medals for India in Paralympics history. Devendra will aim for his 3rd medal in Tokyo. Mariappan Thangavelu and Varun Singh Bhati are the other two medal winners going to feature in the Paralympics for the 2nd time.

Multiple medal winners:
1. Joginder Singh Bedi, 1984 – Silver in men’s shot put L6, Bronze in men’s javelin L6, Bronze in men’s discus throw L6
2. Devendra Jhajharia, 2004 & 2016 – Gold in men’s javelin F46

10 out of 12 medals won by India at Paralympics have come in Athletics while one medal each has come in Powerlifting and Swimming.

India has won medals in 5 different editions. 4 each in 1984 and 2016, 2 in 2004, and one each in 1972 and 2012.

At Rio, Deepa Malik created history as she became the first-ever Indian woman to win a medal at the Paralympics. She bagged a silver medal in the women’s shot put F53 event.

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