Tokyo: Shooter Avani Lekhara scripted history on Monday as she became the first Indian woman to win a gold medal at the Paralympics, firing her way to the top of the podium in the R-2 women’s 10m Air Rifle Standing SH1 event here.
PM Narendra Modi congratulated shooter Avani Lekhara for winning a gold medal at Tokyo Paralympics. He tweeted: Phenomenal performance Avani Lekhara! Congratulations on winning a hard-earned & well-deserved Gold, made possible due to your industrious nature and passion towards shooting. This is truly a special moment for Indian sports. Best wishes for your future endeavours.
The 19-year-old finished with a world record equalling total of 249.6, which is also a new Paralympic record.
She’s the fourth Indian athlete to win a Paralympics gold after swimmer Murlikant Petkar (1972), javelin thrower Devendra Jhajharia (2004 and 2016) and high jumper Thangavelu Mariyappan (2016).
In the SH1 Rifle category, shooters are able to hold a gun with arms. The athletes have an impairment in their legs, for example amputations or paraplegia. Some athletes will compete in a seated position, while others will compete in a standing position.