Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], Feb 24 (ANI): On February 15, Jiya Rai, a 12-year-old, created a world record by becoming the youngest and the fastest specially-abled girl to swim 14 kilometres in open water.
Rai swam from Elephanta Island to the Gateway of India, covering a distance in 3 hours 27 minutes and 30 seconds under the supervision of the Swimming Association of Maharashtra.
She was felicitated at an award ceremony held at K R Kama hall here on Sunday by Abhay Dadhe, Associate Vice President of the Swimming Federation of India.
Jiya's achievement has qualified for registration in the India Book of Records, Asia Book and Limca Book of Records.
The young champion has come a long way since she was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Delay in Speech at a tender age of about two years.
Based on her doctor's advice that her repetitive knocking, a characteristic of her diagnosis, could be purposely applied in water sport as therapy, she was initiated in swimming.
The water therapy worked wonders. Jiya developed a passion for swimming. Her parents were able to nurture this passion and help her prepare for various competitions by overcoming many odds. (ANI)