Rajendra Singh Rahelu was only eight months old, when he contracted polio and since then he has not been able to walk. He was motivated by his friend to pursue a career in weight lifting. He started by lifting a weight of 75 kgs, but rigorous training and motivation made him strong enough to lift a weight of 115 kgs within six months. He has created history after winning a silver medal in power lifting at the Commonwealth Games 2014.
Girish Sharma lost a leg in a train accident and that too when he was a kid. But this great man became the badminton champion. With even a single leg, Girish Sharma effortlessly plays the game and also covers the entire court. Since childhood, he was always indulged in outdoor activities, without letting his disability come in the way.
At the age of two, H. Ramakrishnan’s both legs were affected by polio. He was denied admission in the regular school. But in spite of the odds, Ramakrishnan served as a journalist for over 40-years and is currently CEO of SS Music television channel. He is also a musician. To help children with disabilities, he runs a charitable trust called Krupa.
Dr. Satendra Singh, an acclaimed doctor contracted Polio when he was just nine months old. He is also a prominent disability activist. He is the man, whose efforts made ATMs disabled-friendly by constructing ramps.
Sudha Chandran, the Indian actress and classical dancer met with an accident when she was just 16. Later a small wound in her ankle, that doctors had missed, got infected and there was no alternative left but to amputate her leg. She overcame her disability by getting a prosthetic ‘Jaipur Foot’. But, even with that prosthetic leg, Sudha became one of the most popular and acclaimed classical dancers of India. She has performed Bharatnatyam internationally. She has also been a known figure in the Indian television and film industry and has received many awards for her amazing talent.
Ravindra Jain, one of the most notable music directors of the 1970s, was born visually impaired. He started singing at a very young age and later joined the Indian music industry. Apart from composing many super-hit’ songs for Hindi movies, Jain also has many private albums.
At the age of four, H Boniface Prabhu became quadriplegic for the rest of his life. But disabilities could not change his goals of life. He worked hard and his dedication has made him a notable figure and a leading quadriplegic wheelchair tennis player. This Padma Shri award winner won a medal at the 1998 World Championships.
Sai Prasad Vishwanathan, lost sensation in the lower half of his body when he was a kid. But, nothing could change the strong determinations of this enthusiastic man. He became India’s first skydiver and has his name registered in the Limca Book of Records for being the first Indian with disabilities to skydive from 14,000 feet. He has co- founded Sahasra, an organization that provides scholarships to potential underprivileged students to pursue higher studies.
Javed Abidi was diagnosed with spina bifidia, a developmental congenital disorder caused by the incomplete closing of the embryonic neural tube. But that was not operated on for eight years and caused permanent nerve damage. Further injuries made the situation worse and made him a wheelchair-user when he turned 15. But he continued his studies and even went abroad to finish his education and pursue his dreams of becoming a journalist. He is the founder of the Disability Rights Group and the director of the National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People in India.
Dr. Suresh Advani has been in the wheelchair, when he contracted polio at the age of eight. He faced many difficulties to pursue his dreams due to his disability. But he never gave up and became one of the prominent oncologists. He is credited to start Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation in India. He was honored with Padma Shri in 2002 and the Padma Bhushan in 2012, for his notable contributions in the field of Oncology. He is the first oncologist in India to have successfully done a bone-marrow transplant.
Malathi Krishnamurthy Holla, got paralyzed completely at the tender age of one, after a high fever. She was under regular shock treatment for two years, that brought strengths to her upper body back, but below the waist her body remained weak. But, Malathi decided to accept it and to live life to the fullest. She chose sports as her career. Holla started participating in various games in college. She has taken part in various international events including the Para-Olympics. Holla won Gold in 200m, shot put, discus and javelin throw at the 1989 World Masters’ Games in Denmark. She has won over 300 medals, and the proud recipient of the Arjuna Award and Padma Shri.