India has always been known to be a cricket-centric nation and could not produce quality athletes in any other field. This list will enlighten you the fact of several Indians who bought laurels do their country and yet nobody really is aware of them and their achievements.
1. Makhan Singh
Makhan Singh is one of the fines athletes that India has ever produced and went on to win many medals for India abroad. He won a gold and a silver at the 1962 Asian Games and also beat Milkha Singh in his prime at the national games that year. A winner of the Arjuna award He died in 2002 in utter poverty and his family had to sell his medals to make ends meet.
2. Shankar Lakshman
Lakshman was the first ever goalkeeper to captain an international Hockey team. He won two Olympic golds and silver along with gold in Asian Games as well. He quit playing in 1969 and in 1979 retired from the army spending the last days in extreme poverty and died of gangrene.
3. Murlikant Petkar
Murlikant was a boxer in the Indian army he switched to swimming after being wounded in the Indo-Pak war at 1965. He was Indiaâ€™s first ever individual Gold medalist at the Paralympics in 1972 with a world record. His record isnâ€™t even official as India started keeping records from 1984.
4. Devendra Jhajharia
He is only the second person from India to win gold at the Paralympics and set a world record in doing so. Also became the first disabled athlete to win the Padma Shree but hardly anyone knows him.
5. Wilson Jones
One of the fewer athletes on this list whose achievements have been recognized, Jones has won the Arjuna Award, the Padma Shri and the Dronacharya award. He is a 2-time world champion and a 12-time national champion he died of a heart attack in 2003. Hardly anyone knows him.
6. Ashwini Nachappa
Ashwini won 7 medals in all including three golds and 4 silver medals at the South Asian federation games and a silver at the 1990 Asian Games outrunning the legendary PT Usha in the process. She however switched to acting thereafter and was forgotten.
7. Mohammed Yousuf Khan
Top 3rd From Left
Was part of the Indian football team to win a gold at the 1962 Asian games. He suffered from Parkinsonâ€™s disease later and died of a heart attack soon after.
8. Karnam Malleswri
Karnam is the first female athlete from India to win a bronze medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. She was also a national champion for 9 years and went to break many national records, she is now forgotten.
9. Sarwan Singh
10. Asha Roy
She was the fastest on track at the 2011 Athletics Championships, Asha lived a life of poverty and barely managed to make ends meet. A promising career put to rest.