The country is celebrating the birth anniversary of Indian long distance swimmer Aarti Saha today. He was born in 1940 in Kolkata on 24 September. Aarti Saha became the first Asian woman to swim across the English Channel – a feat considered equivalent to climbing Mount Everest. He covered a distance of 42 miles from Cape Gris Nez, France to Sandgate, England. Saha won her first swimming gold medal when she was only five years old. At the young age of 19, he surprised the world by crossing the English Channel.
Today, on the occasion of his birth anniversary, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari has remembered him. Nitin Gadkari has greeted Aarti Saha by sharing a photo of her on Koo.
At the age of 11, Saha became the youngest member of the first team to represent newly independent India at the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki, Finland. At the age of 18, Saha made his first attempt to cross the English Channel, although it was unsuccessful, but he never gave up. Exactly a month later, she conquered several miles of waves and streams to complete the journey, a historic victory for women across India.
Saha became the first woman to receive the Padma Shri award in 1960. India Post also released a postage stamp in the year 1998 to inspire women from his life. He won 22 awards between 1945 and 1951 in a 6-year state career.