The final shot from Abhinav Bindra's rifle may not have been heard outside the packed hall in the Beijing Shooting Range Complex on Monday morning. But its bang was loud enough to lift the spirit of a billion-plus Indians back home. ( Watch )
No individual gold has mattered so much to so many people in the history of Olympics. It was a medal for Abhinav; it was redemption for India. Never again will anyone be able to point a smug, sardonic finger and say: "No Indian is good enough to win an individual Olympic gold."
Hockey's eight gold medals notwithstanding, the last coming 28 years ago, this is the first time that an Indian has won an individual gold since modern Olympics started in 1896. There is no greater joy than listening to the sound of the national anthem on the world's biggest stage.