19-year-old Avani Lekhara from Jaipur, Rajasthan, scripted history and did the country proud becoming the first Indian woman to win a gold medal in the R2 Women’s 10m Air Rifle Standing SH1 event, at the just-concluded Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
Hers was the first gold medal India won at the 2020 Paralympics, following the 2020 Summer Olympics held there from July 23 to August 8, this year. Avani edged out 2016 Rio Olympics gold medallist Cuiping Zhang of China and reigning world champion Iryana Shchetnik of Ukraine who won silver and bronze respectively.
Congratulating her on winning the gold medal at the Tokyo Paralympics, Prime Minister Narendra Modi messaged her: “Congratulations, Avani, on winning this hard-earned and well-deserved gold medal, made possible only with your industrious nature and passion for shooting. This is truly a special moment for Indian sports!”