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Half marathon, complete courage

12 men, 'The Challenging Ones', will complete the run on artificial legs

While Delhi gears up for the Airtel Half Marathon, a team of 12 people is all ready to leave everyone behind. These determined men, called "The Challenging Ones", are planning to finish the six km run like everybody else. The difference is that they will do so on artificial legs.


Best foot forward: 'The Challenging Ones' (above) will participate in
the half marathon on November 27. Pic/MiD DAY


The half marathon will be flagged off from the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on November 27. These daring participants came together during their treatment with Dr Neeraj Saxena at P&O hospital. Their team, The Challenging ones, is headed by Major (Retired) Devender Pal Singh from Ambala, who lost his right leg during Operation Vijay in Kargil.

The eldest member of the team, 49-year-old Gopendra Kumar Sharma, has lost both is legs when he fell on a railway track in February 2011. "I work for the company IRCON, and also for a school and NGO for disabled. There is lot of negativity regarding handicapped people. We want to set an example that life is beautiful and there is no end to anything if you have dedication. Whatever happens is for good," said Sharma, who is also a local stage actor.

The youngest member, 21-year-old Karan Singh, is a student at JBT College. "I lost my leg in a bike accident. I still play cricket and volleyball with same vigour and passion.  When I can do everything, why should I feel challenged? I have been practicing to run and I am sure our group will make all physically-impaired people feel good about themselves," said Karan.

Running to the rhythm
Eight electrifying bands selected from a total of 27 participating bands will perform at the hotspots during the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon. The bands are Soul'd Out, The Aphids, Colossal Figures, Arjun, Doppler Effect, Lafz-e-Dilli, Project Hustle and Solfege. A blend of music and sports, Airtel Marathon Rockers is a competition that will give the selected bands an opportunity to perform for the city's first-ever morning musical extravaganza held in specially created zones along the track of half marathon. These bands will not only pump up the energy of participants but also keep the spectators in high spirit.

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