A video of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's interaction with Para-athletes, who brought glory to India in Tokyo Paralympics, was released on Sunday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that the achievement of the Indian contingent at the Tokyo Olympics will significantly boost the morale of the entire sporting community in the country, adding that their performances keep him motivated.
"I get motivation from you all," PM Modi told the entire contingent when he hosted them at his residence in Delhi. In a video released on the official Twitter account of PM Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister can be seen interacting with the entire contingent and he lauded each one of them for overcoming adversities.
"Your achievement will significantly boost the morale of the entire sporting community in the country, and budding sportspersons will feel encouraged to come forward to take up sports. This performance has led to awareness about sports that is increasing by leaps and bounds in the country," Modi told the entire contingent.
The Prime Minister also praised the spirit and willpower of the 54-member contingent and said that the performance is praiseworthy looking at the odds that the para-athletes have overcome in their lives.
"A true sportsperson does not get bogged down by defeat or victory, and keeps on moving forward. You all are ambassadors of the country, and you have increased the prestige of the nation on the world stage through your remarkable performance," said Modi.
The para-athletes thanked the Prime Minister for inviting them and said that they feel honoured to share a table with him terming it a big achievement for them. They especially thanked the Prime Minister for giving constant guidance, motivation, and support throughout their endeavour, and said that the athletes of other countries were amazed when they came to know that their Indian compatriots received congratulatory phone calls from their Prime Minister.
Several players also gifted the sporting equipment to the prime minister, with which they won medals at the Tokyo Olympics, with their signatures on them. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the sporting equipment would be auctioned which was welcomed by the athletes.
A stole, signed by all medalists, was also gifted to the Prime Minister.
India clinched 19 medals in the event where 54 para-athletes from across 9 sports disciplines represented the nation in Tokyo Olympics. This was India's biggest ever contingent to the Paralympic Games.
Badminton and Taekwondo made their debut in Tokyo, both of which were represented by India.
Since making its first appearance at the Paralympics in 1968, India had won 12 medals in total till the 2016 Rio edition. The country has now massively improved upon that entire number by 7 medals at the Tokyo Paralympics 2020 alone. Out of a total of 162 nations, India has finished 24th in the overall medal tally, while its accomplishment of 19 medals is ranked 20th based on the number of medals.
The Gold medalists from the Indian contingent at Tokyo Paralympics were: Avani Lekhara in Women's 10m Air Rifle Standing SH1, Pramod Bhagat in Men's singles SL3 badminton, Krishna Nagar in Men's singles SH6 badminton, Sumit Antil in Men's Javelin Throw F64, and Manish Narwal in Mixed 50m Pistol SH1.
Silver medalists were: Bhavinaben Patel in Women's Singles Class 4 Table Tennis, Singhraj Adhana in Mixed 50m Pistol SH1, Yogesh Kathuniya in Men's Discus F56, Nishad Kumar in Men's High Jump T47, Mariyappan Thangavelu in Men's High Jump T63, Praveen Kumar in Men's High Jump T64, Devendra Jhajharia in Men's Javelin F46, and, Suhas Yathiraj in Men's Singles Badminton SL4.
Bronze medalists were: Avani Lekhara in Women's 50m Rifle 3 Positions SH1, Harvinder Singh in Men's Individual Recurve Archery, Sharad Kumar in Men's High Jump T63, Sundar Singh Gurjar in Men's Javelin Throw F46, Manoj Sarkar in Men's Singles Badminton SL3, and Singhraj Adhana in Men's 10m Air Pistol SH1.
The records made by the Indian medallists are as follows: Sumit Antil - World Record in F64 Men's Javelin (Gold), Avani Lekhara - Equalled the World Record and made a Paralympic Record in R2 Women's 10m Air Standing SH1 (Gold), Manish Narwal - Paralympic Record in P4 Mixed 50m Pistol SH1 (Gold), Nishad Kumar - Asian Record in Men's High Jump T47 (Silver), and Praveen Kumar - Asian Record in Men's High Jump T64 (Silver).
(With inputs from ANI)