Praveen Kumar: Silver Medalist

Praveen Kumar is an Indian athlete born on 15 May 2003 in Nodia, Uttar Pradesh. He won silver medal in the event of athletics (Men’s high jump T64) at the 2020 Summer Paralympics. He is doing his graduation from Motilal Nehru College.

A few years back when high jumper Praveen Kumar was trying to get admission in the Delhi University, his admission was denied because of his spot in sports trial “because he was differently abled”. The authorities made recommendation Praveen and his coach Dr Satyapal Singh, a specialized para coach, to apply through the differently abled quota, assuring them of an easier path to college admission.“I made calls to top officials in the university and requested to at least allow Praveen to take part in the trails. They reluctantly agreed,” recalls Satyapal.

But Praveen, who bagged a silver medal (T-64) with a best jump of 2.07m at the Tokyo Paraympics on Friday, his coach felt it was grossly unfair and stood their ground.


When he was in Class-9, he wanted and enrolled in the high jump competition of a school level sports meet and was out rightly denied entry. “My son came home heartbroken. I called up the sports in charge and was told my son didn’t stand a chance since it was an open category event. I request him to give Praveen a chance at least,” father Amarpal, who works in UP government’s irrigation department, says.

Our gold medalist Praveen Kumar not only competed but won a gold medal at the meet. “Bas wahin se shuruat hui thi (Thus began his journey in athletics). And result is in front of you today,” says the proud father. Praveen had a modest upbring in Govindgarh village of Jewar, about a two hour journey from central Delhi. The last half hour was taken to cover just a five kilometer stretch from the main town to his village since the roads are narrow and in dire need of repair. The district has been in news as the site of a new airport that is going to come up and the economic benefits for the farmers who gave their lands for the project.

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