India Mourns As 'Flying Sikh' Milkha Singh Dies Of Covid Aged 91
Muhammad Rameez 1 month ago Sat 19th June 2021 | 09:50 AM
New Delhi, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 19th Jun, 2021 ) :Milkha Singh, one of India's most successful track athletes who overcame childhood tragedy to seek Olympic glory, has died aged 91 after a long battle with Covid-19, Indian media said Friday.
"(W)e have lost a colossal sportsperson, who captured the nation's imagination and had a special place in the hearts of countless Indians. His inspiring personality endeared himself to millions," Modi wrote.
"Dad just passed away," Singh's son Jeev Milkha Singh, himself a leading pro golfer, told the Indian Express newspaper.
Singh was born in 1929 in Govindpura, in what is now Pakistan.
He lost his family during the tumultuous partition of British-ruled India at independence in 1947, when it was divided into Pakistan and India, before going on to become one of the young country's first athletic heroes.
The movie title refers to the poignant last words spoken to Singh by his father. As he was dying, he told Singh to flee or he, too, would be killed in the post-partition riots sweeping the subcontinent.
Millions are believed to have died in the bloody sectarian upheaval.
Singh ran for his life and boarded a train with other refugees.
"He's like what Pele meant to football, or what Jesse Owens meant for track and field for the West." Mehra was drawn to Singh's story not just for his sporting achievements but for the impact the athlete had on a newborn nation struggling to assert itself, describing him as one of the country's first heroes outside politics.
"A hero, an inspiration, a legend. His legacy will live on for generations to come. Rest in Peace, Milkha Singh sir," tweeted cricketer Jasprit Bumrah.