Abhinav Bindra's is a name whose mere mention fills the heart of every Indian with great sense of pride and joy. The iconic Indian shooter scripted history at the 2008 Olympic games when he bagged gold in 10m air rifle shooting event, ending India's excruciating wait for an individual gold medal at the mega sporting event.
Born on 28 September 1982, the five time Olympian started his shooting journey after drawing inspiration from the shooters he saw on television.
Bindra, owing to his extraordinary talent, hard-work and determination made his mark in the world of shooting early. The Indian shooter was picked to represent India at the Commonwealth games 1998 when he was just 15 years old. He then also went on to make his Olympics debut in 2000 at Sydney Olympics as the youngest participant from India.
Besides, the Olympic gold, he has also won a medal of the same colour at World Championships along with multiple medals at Commonwealth and the Asian Games.
As Bindra celebrates his 39th birthday today, lets have a look at some interesting facts about his life which many of you may or may not know
Abhinav Bindra, a child prodigy -
Bindra was honoured with national awards during his teens. He bagged the Arjuna Award in the year 2000 when he was just 18 and won the country's highest sporting honour, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna (now Major Dhyanchand Khel Ratna award) award in 2001 at the age of 19.
Medal Tally of over 150 -
Bindra, in his illustrious career spanning 22 years, won more than 150 medals. In recognition to this, he was bestowed with Padma Bhushan, the country's third highest civilian honour from the Government Of India in the year 2009.
Bindra's autobiography- A shot at History: My Obsessive Journey to Olympic Gold was published in October 2011. It was released by the then Union Sports Minister Ajay Maken, at a function in New Delhi. The book went on to receive positive reviews.
'Lieutenant Colonel' Abhinav Bindra
In the year 2011, Bindra was made an honorary Lieutenant Colonel by the Indian Territorial Army.
Business and Philanthrophy -
Bindra has a bachelor's degree in business and administration from the University of Colorado. He is the CEO of Abhinav Futuristics Private Limited, a firm aimed at bringing science and technology into sports and healthcare sectors.
Also, under his 'Abhinav Bindra Foundation', athletes are provided access to the latest sports and high-performance physical training for free.