Mahinder Singh

Mahinder Singh

Mahinder Singh is a 56-year-old physically challenged person who hails from Naushera. In 1972, he complained of severe pain in his knees. He was taken to the District Hospital at Kangra, where the doctors referred more advanced hospitals in Delhi and Chandigarh. In 1974, after it was too late to change his condition, Mahinder was in a wheelchair. He was a patient with paraplegia. Despite his condition, he overcame life’s challenges and came out strong. He has become a source of inspiration. He gave tuition from the village for school children. All these changes were quite empowering for the boy in the wheelchair. During this time, his pains subsided, and he was able to put more effort into his working schedule. Simultaneously, he made sure to polish his skills by learning new knitting patterns, and his trainers were the village women, the first guru of which his mother was. The initial stage of knitting as a profession was a bit embarrassing for him because village people had a conception that knitting is a woman’s job, so he stopped knitting when someone would pass by. But slowly, he became confident. He has to meet deadlines, handle the work perfectly, and stay connected with his customers. Goal-oriented work with dedication through day and night was the key to his success, and he got orders from his and nearby villages. In 1998, he contacted the Chinmaya Organization for Rural Development through a survey.


He began participating in the meetings of Chinmaya Umang at the CORD Training Centre, facilitated by the Community-Based Rehabilitation and Inclusion Team of CORD. This experience enabled him to view the outside world from a fresh perspective. He actively participated in the Yuva Mandals run by CORD. A revolution came in his life when he participated in the Regional Abilympics competition in Delhi, organized by the National Association of Abilympics of India, for special life skills training and testing of persons with disabilities. Not aware of the competition items, he still won a gold medal in this event. In 2007, he won the Gold Medal at the National Abilympics in Delhi, which led to his selection for international competition, taking him to Japan. This remarkable journey of a wheelchair user from a village in Himachal Pradesh to a foreign country was a challenge at every step. In 2013, he won the Gold Medal in the Regional Abilympic at Delhi. In 2014, he won the Gold Medal in the National Abilympic at Chandigarh. In 2016, he was again selected for International Abilympic completion and went to France.

He is a social activist and has given motivational lectures at many social functions. At present, he is vice president of Chinmaya Umang and actively counsels differently-abled people on their issues. He is the knitting guru and has trained innumerable village ladies. He even helps his family with the daily household chores that involve people of age groups more than 55. Mahinder wants to forward the message to those who are struggling in the initial stages of disability that “NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE”.