By Basit Umer

A 20-YEAR-OLD man who has broken over 300 bones has become an international swimming champion

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Videographer / director: Shams Qari

Producer: Basit Umer, Kim Nguyen

Editor: Beth Angus

 

Moin Junnedi was born with a rare condition called Osteogenesis Imperfecta – more commonly referred to as ‘brittle bone disease’ - a rare genetic disorder characterised by bone fragility and vulnerability to bone fractures. 

But despite his bones being as fragile as glass, the student from Karnataka, has pursued a career in swimming.

Moin told Barcroft TV: “Before I started swimming, life was not good as much as today. I didn’t have friends, nothing to do at home, just watch TV.”

When Moin was born, his mother, Kouser, was told by doctors that her son only had three days to live and now she is his biggest cheerleader.

Kouser said: “Ever since my son was born, I feel motivated.

“So many people have been inspired by his dedication and hard work.

“I couldn’t be prouder.”

Despite trying, Kouser couldn’t enroll her son into a mainstream school or schools for people with disabilities, so she taught him at home.

“Only his coach, Umesh admitted him in his swimming academy without any prejudice,” Kouser said.

Moin’s life transformed when a popular Paralympic swimming coach, Umesh Kalghatgi took him under his wing.

Umesh said: “I spotted Moin at a government event in 2009 and I immediately though that swimming might take his pain away.

“Since then Moin has been my star student and together we have garnered an international fame and reputation.

“Since 2012, Moin has participated in various international events in many countries, most notably in the United States, UK and Indonesia.

“Wherever he has gone, he has inspired people with his courage and positive attitude”.

Moin is also very popular on social media with over 15 thousand followers on Twitter.

“My biggest moment in life came when Bollywood Superstar Shahrukh Khan followed me on Twitter,” he said.

“He also invited me to Mumbai and gave me a tour of a movie set and production facilities.

“That was the happiest day of my life.”

Due to his hard work, dedication and mum’s support, Moin has won over 22 medals in various national and international Paralympic swimming championships.

As well as swimming, Moin is also pursuing an undergraduate degree in commerce and economics at local university.

Moin continues to inspire people and has his eyes set on the Paralympic Olympics.

He said, “I have won many medals and I have a dream of representing my country at the Olympics.”