Arunima Sinha’s journey will make you cry and inspire you like never before
Dr. Arunima Sinha is an Indian Everest climber who, after losing her leg in an accident, went on to become the world’s first female amputee to climb Mount Everest. Arunima Sinha did not stop there. In January 2019, she became the world’s first female amputee to conquer Mount Vinson, Antarctica’s highest peak.
On May 21, 2013, Sinha reached the 8848-meter summit as the first amputee woman in history. The tallest mountains in Africa, Europe, Australia, and South America have all been scaled by her, making her the first female amputee to do it.
Arunima’s Tragic and Inspiring Journey
Arunima was born in Ambedkar Nagar, close to Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. She was raised by her mother following the death of her father, an Indian Army soldier. Arunima, a national-level volleyball player, wished to join the paramilitary. However, her trip to Delhi to take part in the CISF (Central Industrial Security Force) exam changed her life.
On April 12, 2011, she boarded the Padmavati Express train from Lucknow to Delhi to take the CISF entrance test. Some bandits tossed her over the train’s general compartment in an effort to steal her luggage and gold necklace. Another train travelling on a parallel track smashed her leg below the knee as she fell on the railway tracks. She was hospitalised with terrible injuries and had to have her leg amputated to preserve her life. After four months of intensive care and treatment, she received a prosthetic leg.
Soon after she received her medical discharge and before returning to her home, Arunima decided to meet Bachendri Pal, the first Indian woman to summit Mount Everest. She stated her intention to work with Pal to get the skills necessary to climb Mount Everest as she did.
Under Pal, Arunima began her training. The Nehru Institute of Mountaineering welcomed her shortly after. The training wasn’t simple at all for Arunima because her wounds were still raw. But she wasn’t backing down. Within two years, she was prepared to begin her Everest trek with Sherpa Neema Kancha.
On May 21, 2013, at 10.55 a.m. Arunima hoisted the national flag atop Mt. Everest, becoming the world’s first woman amputee to summit the world’s highest mountain. It took her 52 days to reach the peak.
Arunima’s journey did not end at Mount Everest. She climbed the highest peaks of five other continents during the next five years.
- 11 May 2014: Mt Kilimanjaro, Africa
- 25 July 2014: Mt Elbrus, Europe
- 20 April 2015: Mt Kosciuszko, Australia
- 25 December 2015: Mt Aconcagua, South America
- 1 January 2019: Mt Vinson, Antarctica
In 2014, she released her book, “Born Again on The Mountain“. In 2015, she was bestowed with the Padma Shri, India’s fourth highest civilian award. She was also presented with the Tenzing Norgay Award, India’s highest mountaineering honour. In 2018, she was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland.
She presently heads the “Arunima Foundation,” a humanitarian organisation dedicated to empowering women and people with special needs.
We at RealShePower applaud Dr. Arunima Sinha’s tenacity and perseverance, courage and optimism, never-say-die attitude, and warrior spirit. Her journey will undoubtedly inspire millions in the future.