The first Indian woman Olympic Medalist, Karnam Malleswari was appointed as the first Vice-Chancellor of Delhi Sports University by the Delhi Government on Tuesday. She has been a shining star in the history of India with her 2000 Sydney Olympics by lifting 110 kilograms and 130 kilograms in the ‘snatch’ and ‘clean and jerk’ categories.
An official order read “The Lt Governor, who is also Chancellor of Delhi Sports University, is pleased to appoint the Padmashri awardee as first Vice-Chancellor of the university,” This appointment of Karnam Malleswari as the first vice-chancellor marks the materialization of the 2019 bill that was passed by the Delhi Assembly. The bill was in view of setting up a Delhi Sports University (DSU) which will offer graduation, postgraduation, and doctoral degrees in cricket, football, and hockey among other sports.
Karnam Malleswari hails from the Amdalavalsa Mandal of the Srikakulam district. Her weightlifting career started at the tender age of 12 at the Maruti Yuvajana Vyayama Mandali. With guidance from SAAP coach Neelamsetti Appanna, she won several State, national and international championships. Karnam Malleswari was the first to win gold and two silver medals at the World Championship in 1993, 1994, 1995, and 1996.
Karnam Malleswari’s records stand the test of time even today. She still remains to be the only Indian woman to have won a medal in weightlifting in Olympics. Since then, she has won various recognitions and accolades including the Arjuna Award in 1994 and the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award in 1999. A feather on the cap to her legendary journey, Karnam Malleswari was also the recipient of the Padma Shri Award in 1999.
Post her retirement at the Athens Olympics in 2004, she has been serving the sports community in her capacities. Karnam Malleswari is currently married to fellow weightlifter Rajesh Tyagi and works as the Chief General Manager at the FCI. With her appointment, she has once again got national acclaim and laurels to the state of Andhra Pradesh.