Written by Prakriti Panwar, a first-year undergraduate student
Poorna Malavath, a 22-year-old mountaineer made history by scaling the 7 tallest mountains on all the 7 continents of the world. These 7 mountains include Mt. Everest, Mt. Kilimanjaro, Mt. Elbrus, Mt. Aconcagua, Mt. Carstensz Pyramid, Mt. Vinson, and Mt. Denali.
Who is Poorna
Poorna is from Pakala Village in Nizamabad, Telangana, where both her parents are farm laborers. She belongs to a tribal family.
About her journey
She began her journey in 2012 when she was a student at a residential governmental school under the Telangana Social Welfare Residential Educational Institutions Society (TSWREIS). She credits Dr. RS Praveen Kumar, the secretary of TSWREIS for introducing her to mountaineering.
Dr. RS Praveen Kumar had come as a secretary of the residential schools in Telangana with the aim of proving that government schools also provide “quality” education. He wanted to send a positive message that encouraged people to send their children to school.
Thus, he started ‘Operation Everest,’ to promote adventure sports in these schools and among students. He gave a proposal for the same to all the other TSWREIS schools. At the time, Poorna was in 9th grade and was already involved in sports such as volleyball, kabbadi, and athletics. Hence, one of her teachers selected her for the adventure sports program, from where her journey and training began.
Poorna also became the youngest female in the world to scale Mt. Everest at the age of 13 years in 2014.
Rahul Bose, a famous Indian Actor, even adapted Malavath’s story as a biopic called “Poorna: Courage has no limits.” Poorna says that she never expected to become the youngest female in the world to climb Everest and she wasn’t even aware of it.
According to Poorna, her “biggest turning point” was when she climbed Mt. Renok in Darjeeling, the very first peak she sumitted. After summitting this peak, she was determined to prove that “girls can do anything.” Poorna says that while she faced discrimination from villagers, her own parents were very supportive throughout her journey.
Poorna is currently pursuing her post-graduation at Osmania University, Hyderabad.