A physically challenged athlete has created a record in shotput and javelin throw. R Manjunath, a resident of Bogadi was afflicted with polio in his left leg when he was just 5 years old (75 per cent disabled). But his disability did not stopped him from achieving.
Without losing confidence in life he struggled hard to achieve excellence in life. At the age of 6, he lost his father. Being physically challenged, he decided he should become an athlete and started practicing cricket, swimming, tennis, shuttle cock when he was 10 years old. Since 1990’s he dedicated himself to practicing only shot put and javelin throw and today he has to his credit more than 400 medals, of which 60 are gold and 180 silver.
His dream is to set up an Association for Physically Challenged persons and provide them training in various sports and athletics. For the past two years he is travelling across villages to find any physically handicapped persons and motivates them to become athletes for which he extends all possible help to train and make them fit.
Presently he is training more than ten persons by personally visiting the places where they are residing. Four of them residing near Nanjangud whom he trained have won gold medals, coming 2nd and 3rd place in the sports they took part. For livelihood he has done landry work for several years, and since a decade ago he is earning from gas distribution to households.
41-year-old Manjunath who can throw a javelin for more than 9 meters and shotput beyond 5 meters, says: “For nearly two decades am practicing javelin throw. My dream is to win gold for country in para olympics. I need support from government. There are many talented persons in rural area. Due to lack of financial support, most of them are unable to take part in national and international events. Government should identify talented sports personalities and suitably encourage them.”
In the last two decades he has never turned back, amidst facing several financial problems. He has represented country twice in international levels, and Karnataka in national levels several times. He has won third price in Indian Masters Athletics Championship 2016 held for the physically challenged. He has took part in several para National sports meet.
Now, he has been selected to represent India at the World Master’s game 2017 to be held at Auckland, Newzeland from April 21 to 30. He is dedicated to win a gold medal for the country by regularly practicing every day from 6 am to 8 pm. Unable to bear the costs of training, he is seeking financial assistance from philanthropists. Those need to help him can contact 98804 26071.