There was no better occasion for them to showcase their indomitable spirit. ‘blade runners’ from various parts of the country displayed their grit and resolve at the Republic Day celebrations at the Gachibowli G.M.C. Balayogi Stadium on Sunday morning.
While the participants were buoyant about their physical ability to pedal away in different categories of Atlanta Foundation’s ‘Rise of the Republic’ cycling expedition, blade runners led by the indefatigable 25-year-old Arunima Sinha, the first Indian woman amputee to scale Mt. Everest, was the cynosure of all eyes, as she ran a mini-sprint on the synthetic track. Even in this group, Haricharan, 5, stood out for his tenacity and spirit. He had his leg amputated after electrocution while playing on the roof-top of his residence in Sainikpuri. Arunima and other fellow blade runners helped him complete the run, though there were signs of fatigue on the boy’s face.
“We just wanted to show to the world that if there is a will there is a way out. Anyone handicapped should not confine indoors in a regretful mood but should always try to prove a point or two,” said Haricharan’s proud mother.
Similar was the case of Kiran Kanojia of Infosys, who also had to go through the misery of being pushed out of a running train. She may have lost her leg but not the spirit.
The spirit of these fighters came to the fore when Pawan, a freelancer in film editing, and Manish Pandey of Chhattisgarh revealed that they were preparing to take part in the Para-Olympics in South Korea later this year.
Film stars Balakrishna and Charmee along with ACB Director-General A.K. Khan flagged off the 100-km cycling expedition.