The word ‘Avabodha’ in Sanskrit is referred to someone who possess an awakened consciousness of soul. As the motto of the institute says Yogah Karmasu Kaushalam which means Excellence in Action is Yoga, we have an Alumnus who imbibed the thought as the basics of his existence. The spirit of a warrior, the body of iron and a heart of gold, yes we are talking about an explorer of life, Mr. Atal Agarwal, an alumnus of IIT Kharagpur, who graduated in 2017 and became one among the few IITians who represented Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) as an Alum in the prestigious title of Ironman athlete competition.
He finished the legendary race – one of the most challenging endurance athletics activities on earth that included swimming in open water – for 2.4 miles, biking for 112 miles, and running for 26.2 miles in a continuous series, all within a day without any halt. The Vice President of his batch, he taught himself how to swim last year after a near-to-death experience in Lake Tahoe. A philanthropist by nature, he went through a phase of depression and overcame it by taking on challenges in athletics.
An inspiration to all the Kgpians, his journey has been impeccable when it comes to the actual understanding of what you have to offer life rather than what life offers you. Atal’s mission is to take humanity to the 22nd century with the concerns and awareness as healthy beings and considers the health of humans to be his utmost priority.
He actively engages in activities about the physical, mental, spiritual, and financial aspects of the health of all humans and believes that the quality of human life can only be uplifted when all aspects of healthcare are integrated together, something he learned as an Indian, during his 25 years in India. Atal finished the race within 14 hrs and 43 mins during the Ironman Arizona. He is the only Ironman athlete who represented Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in such a prestigious title.
He has been influential towards his Alma Mater with generous contributions and as keen practitioner of philanthropy. He recalls that his experiences mainly from his communities like IIT KGP and his surroundings in the BurningMan taught him how to live in adversities and be an artist. His interest in athletics have taught him how to endure pain without suffering. He has also biked more than 3200 miles in America this year covering a distance equivalent to California to New York. A free spirited explorer on Mother Earth who is living his life like a dream, is an inspiration to all of us.
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By : Poulami Mondal, Digital & Creative Media Executive (Creative Writer)
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