Arunima Sinha, who hails from Ambedkar Nagar in Uttar Pradesh, the national level volleyball player has become the first female Indian amputee to climb Mount Everest even after going through a tragedy in which she lost her one leg after being allegedly thrown off a moving train near Bareilly by unidentified hoodlums while resisting a robbery in April 2011. One of her legs had to be amputated below the knee to save her. Her courage, determination and dedication played an important role in achieving this goal.
She has expressed her desire to set up a multi-facility sports academy in Unnao for physically challenged athletes and had already sought assistance from the state government in this regard. The academy would be named Pandit Chandra Shekhar Vikalang Khel Academy.
In September 2012, chief minister Akhilesh Yadav had promised to help Arunima in setting up the academy for physically challenged and poor children and she hopes that Uttar Pradesh government fulfils its promise.
She has a dream of providing a respectable position to physically challenged people by offering training to them in sports field and making them realize that they too have potential to achieve something in life and become self-independent. Her academy ‘Shaheed Chandra Shekhar Azad Vikalang Khel Academy’ will identify and train physically challenged people and encourages their participation in national and international events. The academy will help them in their physical and social development.
Powered by sheer grit and will power, the 26-year-old girl successfully scaled the 8,848 metre-high world’s highest summit on May 21, 2013. Supported by Tata Steel Adventure Foundation and skilled under Bachendri Pal, who was the first Indian woman to achieve the feat, Arunima completed her expedition from Kathmandu to the top of the peak in 52 days.
“Yuvraj Singh has been an inspiration for me. If a person can fight cancer and come back and perform in the field then why can’t I do something similar,” she said.
In 2015, she was awarded Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award of India. Arunima proved to the world that legs may help you climb mountains, but what one really needs is a heart, a brave heart.