Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Ram Nath Kovind were among the many politicians, sportspersons and celebrities who hailed sprinter Hima Das, who on Thursday became the first Indian woman to clinch a gold medal at a global event – at the World Under-20 Championships in Finland.
The 18-year-old Das clinched the top spot in the women’s 400m final race at the U-20 world championships, after clocking 51.46 seconds in the final, a shade below her seasonal and personal best of 51.13 seconds. The 18-year-old Assamese sprinter started conservatively as her rivals opted for the early burst in the final.
Going into the final stretch, Hima produced a trademark surge to overtake Andrea Miklos of Romania in second place, who finished with a time of 52.07 seconds. Taylor Madson of the United States came third with a time of 52.28 seconds.
Here is a video of the race:
Twitterati were quick to congratulate Das, starting with the prime minister and sports minister.
Das’s fellow sportspersons also joined in, along with the legendary PT Usha.
Bollywood was not too far behind, starting with the reel-life Milkha Singh.
And there was a bit of humour.