India’s Deepa did win a medal for India at Rio. It may not have come in gymnastics but it was still a Produnova in its own right. Deepa Malik, a 45-year-old wheelchair-bound adrenaline junkie, from Gurgaon made history when she became the first Indian woman to win a medal at the Paralympics.
Deepa bagged a silver medal in the shot put F-53 event. Her throw of 4.61 m was the best in her six attempts. With the win, she confirmed India’s third medal from the Rio Paralympics. She is a recipient of the Arjuna Award in 2012, is a paraplegic, paralyzed from waist down and mother of two and wife of an Army officer. And also she is an Arjuna and President’s National Role Model Awardee who has also competed in sports like swimming, Javelin throw, shot put, discus throw and Motorsport.
Deepa’s name is registered twice in the Limca Book of Records, once for crossing 1 km stretch of the Yamuna River against the current in 2008, and then again for covering 58 km by riding a special bike in 2013. She has also won medals in swimming at international competitions. She holds the Asian record in javelin throw, and also has World Championships silver medals in shot put and discus in 2011.
The athlete has 51 gold medals, 5 silver medals, and 2 bronze medals at the national and state levels whereas she also has 17 international medals. In the event, Fatema Nedham of Bahrain clinched the gold medal with a best throw of 4.76 m and Greece’s Dimitra Korokida won bronze with a throw of 4.28 m, which was also her season best.