20 Feb 2019 19:10 IST

IIM-K National Excellence Award for paralympian Deepa Malik

Arjuna and Padma Shri awardee seen as an inspiration to others to succeed in the face of all odds

IIM Kozhikode is to honour paralympian Deepa Malik, with the ‘IIM-K National Excellence Award’ to mark the 10th edition of Peekay Steel Calicut Half Marathon.

Arjuna and Padma Shri awardee Deepa Malik is the first Indian woman para-athlete to win a medal in the Asian Games, the first to win a world championship medal, the first woman paralympic medallist across any sport, besides being the only Indian woman athlete to win medals at three successive Asian Games. She holds a world record for swimming in an open river — across the river Yamuna for 1 km against the current — and also a record for doing a pan-India drive to promote para-sports as she spread the message, ‘Ability Beyond Disability’.

Prof Debashis Chatterjee, Director, IIM-Kozhikode, said: “IIM-K prides itself in empowering women and wishes to highlight the importance of women in all spheres of life. Deepa Malik is the personification of focus and determination. We hope that this event inspires all the runners taking part in the marathon, and encourages them to pursue their dreams despite all odds and stand united in their endeavours. This is inspired by the theme of the marathon ‘United Kerala’.”

The Institute had earlier announced plans to become the first IIM to create 60 additional seats exclusively for women in its flagship post-graduate programme for management from the 2019-20 academic year, and the award given to Deepa Malik only endorses the Institute’s commitment to acknowledging the leadership of Indian women.