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PANDE Kanchanmala
Sport Para swimming
NPC India   
Place of BirthAmravati, IND
Height1.55 m
Human Interest
Impairment Information
Type of Impairment
Vision impairment
Origin of Impairment
S11, SB11, SM11
Further Personal Information
Husband Vinod Deshmukh.
Amravati, IND
Athlete, Coach
English, Hindi
Higher education
Political Science - KL College: Amravati, IND
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
She began swimming at age 10 at a local swimming school in Amravati, India.
Why this sport?
I started swimming at age 10 simply as an exercise and learnt it in just eight days. I gradually started participating in swimming competitions. The thought of competition was opposed by people at first but I moved on. I started competing with children having normal eyesight. My coach Mr. Mangesh Vyavhare took up the challenge to fine-tune my swimming against all odds of society and even of my own family.
Senior International Debut
Competing for
Commonwealth Games
Melbourne, VIC, AUS
General Interest
Kanchi (Facebook profile, 08 May 2019)
Reading books. (, 01 Oct 2017)
Most influential person in career
Indian swimmer Prasanta Karmakar. (, 01 Oct 2017)
Hero / Idol
Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe. (, 08 Mar 2013)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"The swimming pool is like a battlefield. Struggle is the way to face life." (, 01 Oct 2017)
Awards and honours
In 2018 she was named Best Female Para Sportsperson by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities in India. (, 15 Nov 2018)

In 2012 she won the Outstanding Sportsman Special Award from the India Blind Sports Association [IBSA] in New Delhi, India. (Facebook page, 14 Jan 2019)

In 2009 she shared with Indian badminton player Saina Nehwal the ASPIRE Talent Award, a top honour for young athletes in India. In the same year, she also won the Neelum Khurshed Kanga Award from the National Association for the Blind in India. (Facebook page, 14 Jan 2019)
Other sports
She has competed in able-bodied swimming competitions in India. (, 14 May 2015)
She became India's first Para swimming world champion when she won a gold medal in the SM11 200m individual medley at the 2017 World Championships in Mexico City, Mexico. (SportsDeskOnline, 11 Jul 2019;, 15 Nov 2018)
Her visual impairment is a result of the effects of retinitis pigmentosa. (Athlete, 19 Jul 2015)
Other information
She set a Limca record [an Indian version of the Guinness World Records] in a 7km open water swimming competition in India when she was age 11. Initially, she was not allowed to participate as she was under the minimum age of 12, but after obtaining special authority she was allowed to participate. (, 01 Oct 2017)

Her parents struggled to support the family financially when she first started the sport. Her father took early voluntary retirement and her mother sold her jewellery to help raise funds for her training in her early days in the sport. (, 01 Oct 2017)

Competition Highlights (historical)
World Championships (Overall)
Rank Year Event Result
Heats 2015 100m Backstroke S11 1:46.13
Heats 2015 100m Breaststroke SB11 2:03.58
4 2017 100m Freestyle S11 1:32.68
5 2017 100m Backstroke S11 1:42.46
5 2017 100m Breaststroke SB11 1:56.51
1 2017 200m Individual Medley SM11 3:56.03
Heats 2019 100m Backstroke S11 1:41.67
Heats 2019 100m Breaststroke SB11 1:48.09
8 2019 200m Individual Medley SM11 3:42.00
Commonwealth Games (Overall)
Rank Year Event Result
Heats 2006 50m Multi Disability Freestyle 42.40
Heats 2006 100m Multi Disability Freestyle 1:36.88
Asian Para Games
Rank Year Event Result
6 2018 100m Freestyle S11 1:34.74
9 2018 100m Breaststroke SB13 1:56.69