Tokyo: India's trailblazing shooter Avani Lekhara on Friday became the first Indian woman to win two Paralympic medals by claiming the 50m Rifle 3 Position SH1 bronze to add India's medal tally to 12.
Earlier, Lekhara had become the first Indian woman to win a Paralympic gold by claiming the top honours in the 10m air rifle standing SH1 event. The 19-year-old Lekhara, competing in her debut Games, qualified second for the event with a score of 1176, including 51 inner 10s.
In the fiercely contested finals, Lekhara totalled 445.9 to finish ahead of Ukraine's Iryna Shchetnik, who let slip her grip on the medal spot with a poor third shot of 9.9 in the elimination.
The Jaipur-based shooter, who sustained spinal cord injuries in a car accident in 2012 rendering her immobile, had fired a world record equalling total of 249.6, which was also a new Paralympic record.
Lekhara started shooting on the insistence of her father in 2015 at a city shooting range.
"She was angry at her condition and hardly had a desire to talk to anyone. For a change, I used to take her to JDA shooting range in Jagatpura, Jaipur where she developed interest in shooting," her father Praveen Lekhara had told PTI after the gold medal she won in 10m air rifle competition.
The youngster was also inspired by Olympic gold-medallist rifle shooter Abhinav Bindra after reading his autobiography, which was a gift from her father.
A student of law, Lekhara made her debut for India in 2017 World Cup in Al Ain, UAE.
Prior to her, Joginder Singh Sodhi was the lone Indian to win multiple medals in the same edition of the Games when he fetched one silver and two bronze medals in the 1984 Paralympics.
The country has won two gold, six silver and four bronze medals so far