Sports: Abhinav Bindra

MANPREET ROMANA/AFP/Getty Images

Sports: Abhinav Bindra

Age: 27
Olympian Gold Medalist

One of the few noncricketing Indian sportsmen to receive national applause, Bindra won a gold medal at the Beijing Olympics in a sport very few in India have ever played—the 10-meter air rifle event. And yet, as the first ever individual gold medalist for India, he became an overnight star, with many thousands crowding the New Delhi airport last year as he returned from China.