Rio de Janeiro, Sep 7 (IANS) Commemorating the start of the 2016 Paralympic Games here, Google on Wednesday featured an animated Doodle showing cartoon characters competing in a variety of events.

The doodle includes several cartoon figures competing in events like swimming, wheelchair racing, football and blade running. This edition of the Paralympics will feature 23 events and will be held from September 7 to 18.

The 15th edition of the Paralympics, which is expected to draw 4,300 athletes from 161 nations, will get underway following the opening ceremony on Wednesday.

The Games had originally started as a small gathering of British World War II veterans in 1948. It has now grown into the world’s largest sporting event for athletes with physical disabilities. Since 1960, the Paralympics have taken place during the same year as the Olympic Games.

Apart from archery, athletics, boccia, cycling, para canoe, equestrian, football (five-a-side, seven-a-side), goalball, judo, para-triathlon, powerlifting, rowing, sailing, shooting, swimming, table tennis, volleyball, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair fencing, wheelchair tennis, wheelchair rugby, which featured in the previous edition as well, canoe-kayak and triathlon will make their debut at this year’s Paralympics.

The 10 categories of impairment recognised by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) are impaired muscle power, impaired passive range of movement, limb deficiency, leg length difference, short stature, hypertonia, ataxia, athetosis, vision impairment and intellectual impairment.

India has so far won a total of eight medals at the Paralympic Games, including two gold, three silver and three bronze. Of these, one gold, three silver and and two bronze medals have come in athletics while swimming and powerlifting have yielded a gold and a bronze respectively.

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