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Sky is not the limit

india Updated: Apr 11, 2009 23:59 IST

Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

A Ph.D in metallurgy from IISc, Bangalore, 53-year-old Babu set his first world record in 1993 — ‘longest uninterrupted shuttle badminton rally’ of 3,060 strokes in 54 minutes. It was an ‘inaugural’ world record, a category that no one had tried before.

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Mahendra K Joshi from Rajasthan pulled a Boeing 747-800 aircraft with his hair. If you try competing, your feat would be in a book too.

Think you can break 54 marble slabs in 7 seconds? Attempt one a day first. Pradeep Sharma from Punjab could teach you how.

Smashing green coconuts — up for it? 35 of them in 7 min, 26 seconds? If you ask, Keshab Swain in Bhubaneswar may give lessons.

Fastest wearing of socks — J Varatharajan from Tamil Nadu mastered the art by slipping on 58 nylon socks onto his right foot in 20 minutes 33 seconds. No sweat.

On April 14th (his wife’s birthday), he’ll set his 45th — the ‘world’s longest solo basketball match’. He’s managed 206 laps in 51 minutes.

In the past 15 years, Babu has set may other inaugural ‘sporting’ records —“longest uninterrupted” table tennis rally and TT tossings, “longest uninterrupted” solo lawn tennis rally, fastest skipping, frisbee rally, and so on. Besides, he also holds the Limca record for fastest manual thread winding and student notebook wrapping, — as well as for, hold your breath, rearing the tallest white hibiscus plant.

“My scientific training has helped in my record-setting,” says Babu. “Whatever I do, I try to do most efficiently, minimising wastage and cutting down on process.” The best instance of this is his 1998 record of cutting a single cucumber into 1,20,060 pieces. “The actual cutting took two hours, 52 minutes, but it would have taken another 10 hours to count the pieces,” he says. So Babu devised a computer software for counting the pieces he would get with each vertical and horizontal cut of the knife.

Around ten years ago, Babu gave up his teaching job in an engineering college to set up Top of the World Centre for Excellence, through which he gives lectures and conducts workshops to motivate fellow Indians to “realise their potential”. He has a record here as well, accepted by Limca— “1 lakh Indians motivated in 9 ½ years”!