Paralympics 2016: India hopes for record medal haul after fielding largest contingent ever

Represented by their largest ever contingent, India will hope for an improved medals tally when the Paralympic Games start in Rio de Janeiro on Wednesday

IANS September 06, 2016 22:26:00 IST
Paralympics 2016: India hopes for record medal haul after fielding largest contingent ever

Rio de Janeiro: Represented by their largest ever contingent, India will hope for an improved medals tally when the Paralympic Games start in Rio de Janeiro on Wednesday.

A total of 19 Indian athletes will feature in 10 disciplines at the Games which will be held between 7-18 September.

The Sports Ministry announced on Tuesday that the Indian gold medallists from the Paralympic Games will be awarded Rs 75 lakh, the silver medallists will get Rs 50 lakh while Rs 30 lakh will be given to the bronze medallists.

Among the Indian athletes, javelin thrower Devendra Jhajharia, who became India's first Paralympic gold medallist in Athens 2004, will be taking part in his fourth edition and will hope to finish on the podium this time as well.

Paralympics 2016 India hopes for record medal haul after fielding largest contingent ever

Devendra Jhajharia won gold in the 2004 Athens Paralympics javelin event. AFP

The 2016 Paralympics will see as many as 4,300 athletes competing for medals in 23 disciplines.

Apart from archery, athletics, boccia, cycling, para canoe, equestrian, football (five-a-side, seven-a-side), goalball, judo, para-triathlon, powerlifting, rowing, sailing, shooting, swimming, table tennis, volleyball, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair fencing, wheelchair tennis, wheelchair rugby, which featured in the previous edition as well, canoe-kayak and triathlon will make their debut at this year's Paralympics.

The 10 categories of impairment recognised by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) are impaired muscle power, impaired passive range of movement, limb deficiency, leg length difference, short stature, hypertonia, ataxia, athetosis, vision impairment and intellectual impairment.

India has so far won a total of eight medals at the Paralympic Games, including two gold, three silver and three bronze. Of these, one gold, three silver and and two bronze medals have come in athletics while swimming and powerlifting have yielded a gold and a bronze respectively.

Indian squad:

Men: Mariyappan Thangavelu, Varun Singh Bhati, Sharad Kumar, Rampal Chahar (High jump), Sundar Singh Gurjar, Devendra Jhajaria, Rinku, Narender Ranbir, Sandeep (Javelin), Amit Kumar Saroha, Dharambir (Club throw), Naresh Kumar Sharma (Shooting), Suyash Narayan Jadhav (Swimming), Basha Farman (Powerlifting), Ankur Dhama (1,500m), Virender Dhanka (Javelin, Shotput).

Women: Pooja (Archery), Deepa Malik (Shot put), Karamjyoti Dalal (Discus).

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