VISAKHAPATNAM: India’s first woman Olympic medal winner Karnam Malleswari was on Tuesday appointed as the first Vice-Chancellor of Delhi Sports University by the Delhi government. Malleswari won bronze in weightlifting at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.
Her record still remains intact as no woman from India won a medal in weightlifting at Olympics. She was honoured with Arjuna Award in 1994 and Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award in 1999. She is also a recipient of Padma Shri Award in 1999. Malleswari is now working as Chief General Manager in the FCI.
Malleswari hails from Voosavanipeta in Amadalavalasa mandal of Srikakulam. She started her weightlifting career at Maruti Yuvajana Vyayama Mandali. She began undergoing training in weightlifting when she was 12 years under SAAP coach Neelamsetti Appanna.She won several international medals, including two gold and two silver in World Championship in 1993, 1994, 1995 and 1996.
Malleswari married a fellow weightlifter Rajesh Tyagi in 1997. Though she planned to compete in 2002 Commonwealth Games, she had to withdraw due to the death of her father. After failing to win a medal at the Athens 2004 Olympics, she announced retirement.