Vijayawada youth among 14 specially-abled Indian contestants at Abilympics
Though he earned some pocket money with these endeavours, Majety limited these pursuits to the hobby level but vouched that specially-abled people can eke out a career by acquiring skills on associating with enabling bodies like National Abilympics Association of India NAAI and Abilympics events.
Unlike the Olympics, Paralympics and other competitions synonymous for tapping and showcasing sporting excellence at a global scale, Abilympics is a unique format, which demonstrates the vocational excellence of specially-abled people through competitive duels. This is not a sports competition but a contest where specially-abled people exhibit their saleable skills in crafts such as bakery, bicycle assembly, cabinet making, creating web pages, data processing, multimedia journalism, welding, wood carving and publishing. Other crafts include administration and management of network systems, basket making, cake decoration, vegetable carving, character design, cleaning services, computer assembly, computer programming, cooking, massage, pottery and several others. As many as 22 countries will feature 410 candidates in 45 skill areas at the 2023 Abilympics, a quadrennial event, emphasising on the potential of disabled people. The 10th edition of Abilympics, scheduled to be held at Metz, France on March 24 and 25 will feature 14 Indians, one of whom is Mohith Majety, a Vijayawada youth. Majety, competing in outdoor photography category will be accompanied by P Sai Krishnan in the same category, Bhagyashri Nadimetala (basic dress making), Omkar Deorukhkar (poster designing) and Farukh Sheikh (restaurant service) among others. At 25, Majety may have only three fingers and a deformed foot but none of these disabilities deterred him from picking up photography as a hobby while pursuing instrumentation engineering at the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology – Kharagpur. Shooting random pictures after buying a camera in 2016 led him to join multiple student clubs on photography at the premier tech school and eventually learnt about Abilympics through the PWD cell, where he could compete in the photography trade. ''Initially, I took part in the eastern zone of Abilympics which happens in Kolkata…and won a gold medal there. That was the first credit I got in photography and also the first step of motivation,'' he said. Following participation in many competitions, his passion ultimately led him to the Abilympics at the national level in India, where he was trained for three days prior to the competition, enabling him to identify the existing gaps in his pursuit as a hobby than at a professional level. His shooting skills came in handy to make a portfolio on aerial photography, including making advertisements and short commercial films for startups belonging to his college alumni. Though he earned some pocket money with these endeavours, Majety limited these pursuits to the hobby level but vouched that specially-abled people can eke out a career by acquiring skills on associating with enabling bodies like National Abilympics Association of India (NAAI) and Abilympics events. Practice and training propelled Majety to win the first prize at the national Abilympics in 2018, which also carried a purse of Rs 50,000.
Later on, targeting the international Abilympics, Majety made multiple trips to Delhi, where NAAI had trained him for free one-on-one, along with free accommodation and professional coaches. ''I am a live example starting from zero in photography. These people want to motivate,'' he said about NAAI and Abilympics at all levels which are striving for the wider inclusion of specially-abled people. In six hours' time, four hours for shooting and two for post-production, Majety will move around the Abilympics arena to capture six different emotions through an equal number of photographs as part of the contest while the people at the venue will be his subjects. Krishnan, Majety's competitor, will be participating for the third time in the international Abilympics after bagging a silver medal and a fourth position in the earlier editions. As many as 22 participants from more than 10 countries will be giving competition to the two Indians in the outdoor photography category. Enabled by CSR funds, Sarthak Educational Trust, acting as the umbrella body of NAAI is working as a catalyst to bring change in the lives of the disabled through interventions such as inclusion, skill development, sustainable development and advocacy. Meanwhile, it remains to be seen how many medals the 14 contestants will win for India.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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