India’s Devendra Jhajharia, 36, has been making it a habit of bringing honour to his country for years now and he did it all over again – this time at the Rio Paralympics, 2016. Such was his strength and superiority in this event that Devendra, as usual, left everyone trailing in his wake as he charged triumphantly to the gold medal in the men’s javelin throw F46 event on Tuesday. The social media in India was all agog leading up to his event and exploded after he won the medal.
This was not the first time he brought so much glory to the country, Devendra Jhajharia had achieved the same result at the 2004 Athens Paralympics javelin event. His spectacular achievement was made possible with a 62.15 metres throw then and this time round he did even better by sending the javelin sailing as far as 63.97 metres.
Devendra Jhajharia, who is from Rajasthan, was not born with the ailment that has seen him rocket to the gold medals at world events. He has had his left hand amputated after he came in touch with live wire while climbing a tree as an 8-yr old. However, not daunted at all by this debilitating setback, Devendra Jhajharia continued to pursue the most difficult of sporting dreams all through his life.
Among the other events that Devendra Jhajharia participated in and won accolades are a gold medal at the International Paralympic Committee’s (IPC) Athletics World Championships in Lyon in 2013. Back at home, the government awarded him the Arjuna award in 2004 and the Padma Shri in 2012. He is set for another triumphant return back to India.
Devendra Jhajharia would have had many more medals to his name, even Olympic ones, but he was denied that opportunity as the F46 event was not held in the 2008 and the 2012 editions. The fact that he has come back after 12 long years and still managed to win one, indicates his dedication to his sports and his unstinting belief in his own abilities to beat everyone.
Devendra Jhajharia has been able to keep himself at the top of his fitness with a fine regimen that he follows. In fact, considering that this time he has bettered his own old mark signifies that he has improved his fitness even more and that can come only by way of constant practice. To his credit, Devendra Jhajharia has never sat back on his haunches to try and count his achievements, instead he has always looked ahead to all the other glory he could bring to himself and his countrymen.