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Tokyo 2020 Paralympics

Suhas Yathiraj clinches silver medal at Tokyo Paralympics overcoming congenital deformity in legs

IAS Suhas Yathiraj etches his name in history after winning the silver medal in Tokyo Paralympics.

Suhas Yathiraj badminton silver paralympics

Suhas Yathiraj (Source: Getty Images)


Rajdeep Saha

Updated: 5 Sep 2021 5:05 AM GMT

District Magistrate Suhas Yathiraj has won silver in the Men's Singles SL4 Badminton final. His efforts were more than commendable but France's L. Mazur was a step ahead of India's bureaucrat. Nevertheless, Yathiraj clinched second place to become India's first-ever IAS officer to win a Paralympics medal. This is the country's third medal in badminton, making the first-time event a successful one.

The civil servant was born with congenital deformity in his legs but that was never a drawback for him. His journey as a shuttler began back in 2016 when he was serving as a District Magistrate of Azamgarh district. Despite only been called to a badminton event as a guest of honour, he had an urge to participate, such was his love for sports. The current para-badminton coach, Gaurav Khanna, had spotted Yathiraj at that event after which he encouraged him to take the sport up professionally.

In 2016 itself, the bureaucrat won gold at the Asian Championships, thereby making him the first non-ranked player to achieve the feat. From there, there was no looking back for him. The medals never stopped coming in, especially at the BWF Championships, with a recent gold at the Brazil edition.

Juggling work and training has never been easy for anyone. The IAS officer did not have a much dissimilar experience. Yet, his aim to win a Paralympic medal as soon as he had qualified for the Tokyo games was enough to keep him going. All his hard work paid off as he realised his dream on the final day of the Tokyo Paralympics.

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