Para athletes return victorious from World Championships

The Paralympic Committee of India president, Rao Inderjit Singh was happy that there were five medals this time and assured that the number would keep increasing in the run up to the Tokyo 2020 Games.

Sundar Singh Gurjar shone with a gold medal at the World Para Athletics Championships in London and has promised to win another one at the Asian Games as well.   -  Getty

Sundar Singh Gurjar was thrilled to wipe the sad memories of the Rio Paralympics with a gold medal in the World Para Athletics Championships in London.

Addressing the media at a felicitation function organised by the Paralympic Committee of India (PCI) on Tuesday, Sundar said that he was determined to win the gold this time.

"In Rio, I was two minutes late for my event and could not compete. I felt like a murderer when we returned. But, I trained hard. Since, the focus on winning, I could not perform my best. But, I promise that I will win the Asian Games gold with a world record," said Sundar.

Arjuna awardee Amit Saroha said that he was happy to win the silver in Club throw with a world record.
"In Rio, I had missed a medal on the last attempt. It was my day this time," said Amit as he thanked the PCI, the Union Sports Ministry and the Sports Authority of India (SAI) for all the support.




It was another matter that the PCI president, Rao Inderjit Singh, Union Minister of State for Planning, Urban Development, Housing and Poverty Alleviation, pointed out that the PCI had to pay about 40,000 pounds to the organisers for the 20 athletes who had not been cleared.

He also pointed out that none of the support staff were cleared by the government and they went on their own expense.

"The government cleared only 30 athletes, and we expected to field 50 and had committed for that many to the organisers. We could not field the rest at our cost," said Rao Inderjit Singh.

The PCI president was happy that there were five medals this time and assured that the number would keep increasing in the run up to the Tokyo 2020 Games. He pointed that there were five athletes who placed fourth and one of them had missed the javelin medal by two centimetres.

Sharad Kumar, who had won the silver with 1.84 metres in high jump said that he had come out of the trauma of having been accused of doping in 2012.
"I had to get what I had lost in London. I had gone to Ukraine on my own and trained. Paralympics has come a long way in India in recent times," he said.

Two other athletes, Varun Singh Bhati and Karam Jyoti who had won the bronze in high jump and women’s discus respectively could not be present owing to various reasons.

"Among the five athletes who won medals this time, only Varun Bhati had won a medal in the Rio Olympics. The base of the pyramid is widening and we are confident of more good performances," said the PCI president.

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