Indian gold medallist in the Paralympics, Mariyappan Thangavelu, on Monday donated a part of his prize money to the school which he had studied in. Thangavelu, 20, became the third Indian to win a gold at the Paralympics after Murlikant Petkar (1972) and Devendra Jhajharia (2004).
When athletes win it big at an event like the Paralympics, it is hard for them to forget the hurdles, both social and financial, they have crossed to make the journey. High-jumper Mariyappan Thangavelu is one of such athletes who keeps inspiring us with his work both on and off the track. Despite coming from a poor background, Thangavelu showed his benevolence by donating a part of his prize money, a reported amount of 30 lakh, to the school he had studied in.
The athlete won the gold medal in the mens's T-42 High Jump event with an effort of 1.89m, by defeating world champion Sam Grewe of the USA, who registered an effort of 1.86m. Varun Singh Bhati of India also secured the bronze medal for India with a jump of 1.86 meters in the same event.
After his achievement, Thangavelu received Rs 2 crore from the Tamil Nadu government, while the sports ministry has also announced a cash prize of Rs 75 lakh. After expressing his wish to build a house for his mother on Sunday, it was reported by IANS that he has now also decided to make a donation to his school in the Periavadagampatti village in Tamil Nadu.
After Murlikant Petkar (Swimming, 1972 Heidelberg) and Devendra Jhajharia (Javelin Throw, 2004 Athens) won gold medals for India in the Paralympics, Thangavelu was the third athlete to achieve the feat.