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India won its first Olympic medal as a free country in hockey in the 1948 London Olympics. The feat was repeated in 1952, 1956, 1964 and 1980.

K D Jadhav won the first individual medal for India at the Olympics. He won a bronze medal in wrestling at Helsinki in 1952. In Rome, Milkha Singh was placed fourth in 400m, despite breaking the then world record.

Dr Karni Singh won a bronze medal in shooting at Tokyo in 1964. Twenty years later, PT Usha missed the bronze medal by one-hundreth of a second in the 400m Hurdles.

It took 16 years for India to feature in the Olympics medal tally when Leander Paes won the men's singles tennis bronze at Atlanta in 1996. Since then, Karnam Malleswari and Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore have ensured that India features on the medals tally in the next two Olympics.
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