Like mother like daughter: Devika Malik carries forward her mother Deepa Malik’s legacy -
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Like mother like daughter: Devika Malik carries forward her mother Deepa Malik’s legacy

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Devika clinched a gold in the 100m T37/36 category

Khel Today Bureau 
New Delhi: Mother Deepa Malik was inaugurating the first ever Khelo India Para Games 2023 along with Sh Anurag Thakur, Hon’ble Minister for Sports and Youth Affairs while Devika Malik was sweating it out on tracks of Jawahar Lal Nehru stadium competing in track events. Devika Malik, eldest daughter of Deepa Malik, has always tried to carve her own identity from the towering personality of her mother Deepa Malik is the with symbol of para games in the country.
Devika won Gold medal in 100 metres in T37/36 category, while she had to be content with a silver in 200 mtrs in the T37/T35 category.

“I trained a lot during for the 4th Para Asian Games held at Hangzhou just some weeks ago. I guess the training helped me at these Khelo India Para Games. It was really a matter of pride to win two medals for Haryana. Though I am an international athlete but playing in Khelo India Para Games has its own charm,” says Devika with a lot of pride.
Born a premature baby with acute neonatal jaundice and hemiplegia, Devika Malik was paralysed on one side of the body. Despite her disability, nothing could stop Devika from becoming an international para-athlete. A proud mother and a champion of para sports her self Deepa Malik beams with joy at her daughter’s achievements.

“I think I have a different soul connection with Devika. As a mother I took care of her and now she takes care of me. I cannot ask more from her. Though I never forced her to take sports, but just like me, I guess she found a solace on the athletic track,” says Deepa Malik.

Para games Mascot Ujjwala.

Both daughter and mother entered the field of sports together and were each other’s practise partners, input providers and companions. While Deepa Malik went on to create history in 2016 by becoming the first ever woman to win a medal at the Paralympics, Devika on other hand has been making her own mark on track. But they say, how far can the fruit fall from the tree? Devika’s source of inspiration is definitely her mother Deepa Malik.

“My mother has been my greatest supporter and enabler in this journey. She has proved her own ability beyond disability, living with below-chest paralysis for the past two decades. She has achieved the highest honours in sport, becoming India’s first female Paralympic medallist, and has always been an inspiration to everyone around her. She has worked extensively to improve policies for people with disabilities, and has been the most passionate and proud supporter of my decision to turn a social entrepreneur. We work hand-in-hand to enable other people with disabilities, and my journey has been all about following in her incomparable footsteps,” says Devika talking about the impact of her mother on her life.

For her efforts, Devika received recognition from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and was awarded the Queen’s Young Leader Award by Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace in London in 2015. She has also had the privilege of addressing the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in front of the entire British Royal Family, and all 53 Heads of Commonwealth Countries, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, at the Opening Ceremony about disability in 2018. Her work as an entrepreneur was also recognised by the NITI Aayog in 2018.

Devika holds the National Record for 100 mts and 200 mts in her category and has been training under the watch full eyes of Sh Amit Khanna, who once was one of the fastest man of country.

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