Chandu Champion: The story of Murlikant Petkar, who won India’s first Paralympic gold

It is about 1965, when there was a war going on between India and Pakistan.

A soldier was badly injured by bullets in that war and went into coma. When he regained consciousness, he found that he was paralyzed forever.

Exactly seven years later, in 1972, that soldier participated in the Paralympics for India.

He creates history by winning the gold medal in the Paralympics for India for the first time in an individual event and becomes the world champion.

Director Kabir Khan and actor Kartik Aaryan’s film ‘Chandu Champion’ is inspired by the life of Muralikant Petkar, who created history for India.

Story by MurliKant Petkar

Murlikant Petkar’s story begins much before he became a world champion. He was a soldier in the Indian Army when he was in the Boys Battalion.

Muralikant Petkar, born on 1 November 1944 in Maharashtra, is now 82 years old and lives in Pune, Maharashtra.

He always stood first in sports – wrestling, hockey, athletics.

He says, “In 1965, there was a war going on between India and Pakistan and we were in Kashmir. After a while, we heard the sound of a whistle. We were all new and we thought that maybe the whistle was blown for tea break. But it was an air strike alert.”

“The soldiers with me left the bunker. Meanwhile, the attack took place. There was heavy firing from both sides. I was also shot. One bullet hit my spine. That bullet is still in my spine.”

“After being shot, I fell off the cliff. When I fell down, an army tanker coming from behind ran over me. I was hospitalized. For a long time, I couldn’t even remember my name. Then I came to know that I was paralyzed from the waist down.”

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