Indian swimmer Arati Saha is honoured by Google with a doodle

Indian swimmer Arati Saha is honoured by Google with a doodle

NEW DELHI: Google on Thursday remembered Indian swimmer Arati Saha who became the first Asian woman to swim across the English Channel on her 80th birth anniversary.

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In 1959, Saha registered her name as the first woman from Asia to swim across the English Channel. She covered a distance of 67.5 km in 16 hours and 20 minutes. Upon reaching the English side of the Channel, she hoisted the Indian flag.

Indian sporting history, In 1952 stands out – this was the year when India was participating in the Olympics as an independent republic for the first time.

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The Summer Olympic Games that year were held in Finland. India sent 64 male and four female sportspersons to take part in the Olympics. Among them was Arati Saha, a prodigious swimming talent who was all of 12, making her the youngest person in the contingent.

Arati Saha, who has been celebrated with a Google Doodle on the occasion of what would have been her 80th birthday, started swimming as a four-year-old in the Hooghly river in Kolkata, her city of birth.

This was her second attempt.

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Thereafter, she became the first woman to be awarded the Padma Shri. In 1960, the Jawaharlal Nehru government awarded the Padma Shri, the first woman to get the honor.

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