Avani Lekhara has brought laurels to the country by winning gold in women’s 10m air rifle standing SH1 and India’s first medal in shooting at the Tokyo Paralympics on Monday.
She won the gold medal with a total score of 249.6 in the final.
With this score, she equalled the world record.
With this win, the 19-year-old player created history by becoming the first Indian woman to lift a gold medal at the Paralympics.
Avani is the fourth Indian athlete to win a Paralympics gold.
The other players, who won gold in Paralympics, were swimmer Murlikant Petkar (1972), javelin thrower Devendra Jhajharia (2004 and 2016), and high jumper Thangavelu Mariyappan (2016).
While expressing her feelings after the win, Avani said, “I cannot describe this feeling. I am feeling like I am on top of the world. It cannot be explained.”
Avani will also be competing in the mixed 10m Air Rifle Prone SH1, the women’s 50m Rifle 3 Positions SH1 and the mixed 50m Rifle Prone event.
In the SH1 Rifle category, shooters can hold a gun with arms.
While sharing the news, Union sports minister Anurag Thakur tweeted, “Amazing Avani wins gold medal for India.”
“A historic achievement as she becomes the only woman in Olympics & Paralympics to win a gold !”
“Shooting in 10m AR Standing SH1 Final
Score of 249.6 creating a Paralympic Record
Equalling the World Record”
Amazing Avani wins?for ?? !
A historic achievement as she becomes the only woman in Olympics & Paralympics to win a gold !
— Anurag Thakur (@ianuragthakur) August 30, 2021
Union minister Kiren Rijiju has congratulated Avani for her achievement.
Rijiju tweeted: “India strikes 1st Gold Medal at the #Paralympics #Tokyo2020! My heartiest congratulations to
@AvaniLekhara for winning India’s first gold medal in Para Shooting. We are so proud of you Avani!”
India strikes 1st Gold Medal at the #Paralympics #Tokyo2020 !
My heartiest congratulations to @AvaniLekhara for winning India's first gold medal in Para Shooting. We are so proud of you Avani! pic.twitter.com/oIL8trtRCk
— Kiren Rijiju (@KirenRijiju) August 30, 2021
“GOLD for India. Congratulations to @AvaniLekhara on bagging gold Sports medal in Women’s 10m Air Rifle Standing SH1 event at #Tokyoparalympics. We are proud & happy! Wishing you many such glories!”, Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma tweeted.
GOLD for India ??
— Himanta Biswa Sarma (@himantabiswa) August 30, 2021