EARLY STAGES OF LIFE:
This gold medal winner was only five years old when his right knee was crushed in a bus accident, which left him permanently disabled. Later his father abandoned the family and he and his mother Saroja had to go through a tough life financially. Saroja has been offering domestic help for years and her livelihood banks on selling vegetables. But she ensured that Mariyappan’s initial love towards sports developed into something special. Mariyappan was a volleyball player earlier. From being that person to becoming only the third Indian paralympian to win a gold medal, Mariyappan has come a long way. However, even at this point, his family continues to be involved in a legal issue against the state-owned transport corporation.