Press Trust of India
Javelin thrower Devendra Jhajharia became the first Indian to clinch two gold medals at the Paralympics after he broke his own world record to clinch the top honours at the Rio Games at Rio De Janeiro.
Devendra, who won his previous gold in the 2004 Athens Games, bettered his own world record to finish on top in the men's F46 event. Devendra, whose previous best was 62.15 metres (achieved in the 2004 Games), improved the mark with an attempt of 63.97m at the Olympic Stadium (Engenhao).
India now has two gold, one silver and one bronze in the ongoing edition of the games.
Born in the year 1981, Devendra Jhajharia hails from the Churu District in Rajasthan. At the age of eight, while climbing a tree he touched a live electric cable. He received medical attention but the doctors were forced to amputate his left hand. In 1997 he was spotted by Dronacharya Awardee coach R.D. Singh while competing at a school sports day, and from that point was coached by Singh. He gave credit to his personal coach R.D. Singh for 2004 Paralympic Gold Medal.
In 2002, he won the gold medal in the 8th FESPIC Games in Korea, followed by his qualification for his first Summer Paralaympic Games where he represented India at Athens. At the games 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. Further athletic success came in 2013 at the IPC Athletics World Championships in Lyon, France when he took the gold medal in the F46 javelin throw. He followed this with a silver medal at the 2014 Asian Para Games at Incheon in South Korea. At the 2015 IPC Athletics World Championships in Doha, despite throwing a personal best of 59.06, Jhajharia could only finish in second place, claiming silver behind China's Guo Chunliang, who threw a championship record distance. In 2016, he won a gold medal at the 2016 IPC Athletics Asia-Oceania Championship in Dubai.
Thangavelu Mariyappan had earlier struck gold in the men's high jump, while Varun Bhati had secured a bronze in the same event. Later, Deepa Malik won a silver in the women's shot put event to add to the tally.