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India Wins First Medal at Tokyo Olympics as Chanu Mirabai Bags Silver in Women's Weightlifting

© REUTERS / CHRIS GRAYTHENTokyo 2020 Olympics - Weightlifting - Women's 49kg - Group A - Tokyo International Forum, Tokyo, Japan - July 24, 2021. Mirabai Chanu Saikhom of India in action. Pool via REUTERS/Chris Graythen
Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Weightlifting - Women's 49kg - Group A - Tokyo International Forum, Tokyo, Japan - July 24, 2021.  Mirabai Chanu Saikhom of India in action. Pool via REUTERS/Chris Graythen - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.07.2021
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Chanu Mirabai is the second Indian female athlete to win an Olympic weightlifting medal since Karnam Malleshwari. Malleswari won a bronze medal in the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Ending India's wait for its first medal in the Tokyo Olympics medal, 26-year old Indian weightlifter Chanu Mirabai on Saturday won a silver medal in the women's 49 kg weightlifting competition. The Indian athlete lifted a total weight of 202kg.
Mirabai was happy that her hard work had borne fruit and she was now an Olympic medallist, but also said that she went for gold, but in the end could not go the distance.
“The entire country was watching me and they had their expectations. I was a little nervous but I was determined to give my best…I worked really hard for this. I tried my best to win gold medal, but I wasn’t able to win gold; but I really tried", Chanu said from Tokyo.
​China's Hou Zhihui, who picked a combined weight total of 210kgs, secured a gold medal. 
​This is India's best start since the 2008 Beijing Olympics, as the country has not won any medal, let alone a silver in the first two days of the games in the past.
Minutes after she secured the medal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to Twitter and hailed her performance. In a tweet, PM Modi said that the Manipur weightlifter would motivate other Indian athletes.
​President of India Ramnath Kovind also took to Twitter to congratulate Mirabai Chanu.
​Many sports stars and celebrities also took to Twitter and congratulated Mirabai for her stellar performance. 
​Soon after Mirabai won the medal, social media users also started posting stories of her childhood hardship and about her village in Indian state Manipur. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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