Malathi Krishnamurthy Holla: Champion for the Differently- Abled!

Malathi Krishnamurthy Holla

"Disability is a state of mind" This lady who hails from Bangalore has made India proud.

Malathi Krishnamurthy Holla is an international para-athlete from India and is familiar to the sporting world. At the age of 55, Malathi has succeeded and won over 300 medals, received the Padma Shri award, and an Arjuna award.

Malathi was struck with Polio when she was a year old. As a part of the treatment, she was given electric shock for two years to strengthen her upper body, while the same could not be said for her legs.

Malathi's father shifted her to the Ishwari Prasad Dattatreya orthopedic facility in Chennai, where she has undergone 32 surgeries in 15 years.

Over a period of time, Malathi realised that she wanted an alternative to medicine that would take away her pain. That's when she decided to pick sports to fill the gap in her life. She knew that this was the only way to set an example for the others. Her father encouraged her to come out of her shell and make her worth in the real world.

Malathi decided to move back to Bangalore to take a shot at the national games. She won a gold and two silver medals for the effort that she put in. She also landed a job at the Syndicate bank, thus breaking the glass ceiling.

Malathi decided to pursue sports at an alarming pace were her sports of choice seemed to lie in 100 and 200 meter wheelchair races, shot put, discus, and javelin throw. Her normal day starts at 4:30 am when she begins her swimming classes. She works at the bank everyday till 7 pm and then heads for practice.

She has also started the Mathru Foundation in Bangalore ? a shelter that teaches and helps physically disabled people overcome their situations. The foundation's main aim is to help Polio victims from rural India. The foundation assists in children getting surgeries free of cost owing to certain philanthropic doctors.

Malathi has won 157 gold, 18 silver, and 8 bronze medals nationally and internationally. And she's still going strong. She is known as 'the champion of champions' by the international community. She is the fastest Indian wheelchair athlete from India. In 2009, Malathi launched her first autobiography called, 'A Different Spirit.'

Malathi believes that, ?One should not become a slave to circumstances ...after all, we create circumstances."

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