Miss Jiya Rai, daughter of a senior sailor of the Indian Navy Mr. Madan Rai, MC-AT-ARMS II of INS Kunjali, and a student of Navy Children’s School in Mumbai, brought glory to India by swimming across the Palk Straits from Talaimannar (Sri Lanka) to Dhanushkodi (India), on 20 March 2022 a distance of 29 km, in 13 hrs 10 mins. A child with autism spectrum disorder, Miss Jiya achieved the feat at the age of 13 years and 10 months, becoming the youngest and fastest female swimmer in the world, to swim across the Palk Straits. The record was previously held by Ms. Bula Choudhary covered the distance in 13h 52m in 2004.
The event was organized by Para Swimming Federation of India (PSFI) in collaboration with several agencies including Swimming Federation of India, Sports Development Authority, Tamil Nadu and Autism Society of India. Goa Shipyard Limited provided financial sponsorship to the swimmer for the event.