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Defying Age and Conquering Mountains: Virat Chandra Telukunta, The Boy Wonder of Telangana

Mountaineering, often referred to as mountain climbing, is a sport that involves attempting to reach or climb high altitudes in mountainous terrain. In March 2021, a third-grade student from Gitanjali Devshala in Secunderabad climbed the tallest mountain in South Africa with his coach.

Virat Chandra Telukunta, at the age of seven, became one of the youngest climbers of Mount Kilimanjaro. With the guidance of his coach, Bharat Thammaneni, Virat summited the African mountain after arduous training. He is bestowed with the title”Grand Master” for climbing Mount Kilimanjaro at a young age.


He is skilled in skating, dancing, and guitar playing and likes to cook with his mother. Defying the age, he climbed Tanzania’s Mt. Kilimanjaro, which rises to 5,895 metres, with his father and a guide on March 6, 2021, when he was 7 years, 4 months, and 25 days old.


A video call with his cousins Kartik and Vaishu, who were trekking in Uttarakhand, inspired him to take on this feat. The next phase involved rigorous physical and mental training. He finally made the inconceivable decision for someone of his age and later made history by becoming the youngest person to reach the top of Africa’s tallest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro.

The Journey Of Adventure

When Virat expressed his desire to climb the peak for the first time his parents disapproved. However, after a week of pressure, they decided to talk to Bharat Tammaneni, who coached Virat’s cousins in the hills. After assessing Virat’s body’s immunity for a month, Bharat started the training.  He was assured about Virat’s skills after evaluating his physical condition. They started from Hyderabad on 28 February 2021 and took six days to complete the summit.


Virat Chandra faced obstacles such as extremely cold temperatures, finger agony, hand pain, and thigh pain while climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. He underwent a month of tough training to discover his potential. At that time, Virat used to climb the Moulali fort every other day and run 6 to 7 kilometres daily. As Kilimanjaro is the only mountain with four distinct climates, they had to adapt to each of the four terrains to survive.


After climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, Virat Chandra Telukunta of Hyderabad was given the Prime Minister Bal Puraskar 2022 in Sports. He is listed in both the Asian and Indian Books of Records.


He intends to go to the Australian Summit and scale Mount Kosciuszko once border restrictions are relaxed.

Eight-year-old Virat from Trimulgeri is the only person from Telangana among the 29 recipients of the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Balapuraskar Award. He received recognition in the sports sector for ascending Mount Kilimanjaro at a young age. Every young person his age who hikes mountains is taking a significant risk. But throughout the entire five-month training period, he showed outstanding dedication. After going to school in the morning, he had a strenuous workout in the evening. His success at such a young age is the product of his passion, tenacity, and hard work as well as the guidance and support of his parents and mentor. Virat’s successes have inspired pride in all of us.

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