With a world record of swimming 1.4 miles in 1 degree Celsius temperature in the Antarctic Ocean in 52 minutes, Bhakti Sharma turned to be the first and youngest Asian girl to achieve the open water swimming championship.
Bhakti has been pursuing open water swimming for the last ten years. Applauding the young swimmer on Thursday, President Pranab Mukherjee said, “I am delighted to know that you have set a world record, becoming the world’s youngest and the first Asian girl to achieve this feat.”
He added, “Your success is a matter of great pride for all Indians, especially our youth. The whole country joins your family and you in celebrating this impressive achievement. I extend my congratulations and wish you continued success in all future endeavours.”
However, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also congratulated Bhakti Sharma on Thursday for the same. “We are all very very proud of Bhakti Sharma for her accomplishments! My best wishes to her,” Modi said in a statement.
According to reports, beating the previous record by British open water swimming champion Lewis Pugh and American swimmer Lynne Cox , Bhakti Sharma on Tuesday became the first Indian woman to achieve this feat.
Bhakti, who has conquered all the five oceans of the world, is a recipient of Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Award in 2010.
Meanwhile, as per reports, the Chief Executive Officer of Hindustan Zinc, Akhilesh Joshi, said, “We are very proud of Bhakti Sharma for this rare achievement. Whole country is proud of her and particularly girls who would be seeing her as inspiration to join swimming.”
He said that her achievement only proves that India can produce many such talents by giving the right support and opportunities.