A 26-year-old Indian woman defied all odds to become the world's first woman to conquer Mount Everest on a prosthetic leg.
Arunima Sinha, a member of Tata Group sponsored Eco Everest Expedition, reach the zenith of the world at 10.55 am on Tuesday. The former national-level volleyball player from Uttar Pradesh lost her left leg in 2011, when she was thrown off a train by miscreants in a chain-snatching attempt. She was on her way to Delhi from Lucknow for a CISF job interview when the incident happened.
While recovering at the hospital, Sinha had decided to do something for herself instead of being at the receiving end of sympathetic gestures.
"At that time everyone was worried for me. I then realised I had to do something in my life so that people stop looking at me with pity. I read about people scaling the Mt Everest. I spoke to my older brother and my coach who only encouraged me," she told NDTV before leaving for the expedition.
A determined Sinha approached Bachendri Pal, the first Indian woman to scale Mount Everest and chief of Tata Steel Adventure Foundation (TSAF), and trained under her.
According to TSAF information, Sinha followed Susen Mahato, another climber from the organisation and reached Mount Everest within 52 days.
Sinha, who sought her inspiration from cricketer Yuvraj Singh, spoke of him, "He sent me a cheque of Rs. 1 lakh and also spoke to me when I was recovering. I then got to know later he was diagnosed with cancer. When I saw him back in the Indian team I was inspired and said to myself that if he can get back to the team, I could do something with my life."
Doctors at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Trauma Centre expressed surprise and happiness as news of Sinha's ascent reached them.
"I knew that she wanted to climb the Everest but I am absolutely speechless and happy to hear that she has managed to do it so soon," Dr MC Misra told The Hindu.