Milkha Singh will be synonymous with courage: PT Usha, Virender Sehwag leads sports stars' tribute to icon

HORNBILLTV
June 19,2021 09:55 AM
HORNBILL TV

Highlights

Milkha Singh passes away: Former India cricketer Virender Sehwag and sprint great PT Usha paid their tribute to the legendary athlete who died on Friday due to Covid-19 complications.

Tributes have been pouring in for legendary Indian athlete Milkha Singh who died on Friday aged 91 due to Covid-19 complications. A 3-time Olympian and Asian Games, Commonwealth Games gold medalist, Milkha Singh put Indian athletics on the world map wiith his efforts on the track.

Milkha Singh breathed his last five days after his wife and former India volleyball captain Nirmal Kaur died due to Covid-19 ini Chandigarh. Milkha contracted the virus in May and was even discharged from a private hospital in Mohali later in the month. However, he was readmitted to ICU of Covid Hospital of PGIMER on June 3. His condition had improved upon admission but his oxygen saturation levels dipped before he passed away on Friday.

Taking to social media, former India opener Virender Sehwag paid tribute to the legendary athlete and said the name MIlkha is synonymous with courage and will-power.

"The great man #MilkaSingh ji has left us in body, but the name Milkha will always live on as being synonymous with courage and will-power. What a man. My sincere condolences to his family. Om Shanti," Sehwag wrote.

Milkha Singh, who overcame umpteen personal struggles to reach the skies, is fondly remembered not just for his on-track achievements but for the grit and character he showed throughout his life. Milkha Singh was orphaned during the partition and took to athletics after joining the Indian Army.

While his maiden Olympic appearance in 1956 ended in disappointment, Milkha Singh roared back to form, winning the Asian Games gold medals in 200m and 400m in 1958. He also won the Commonwealth Games gold in the same year.

Milkha Singh is best remembered for his 400m race at the 1960 Rome Olympics, where he became the first Indian male to reach the final of an Olympic event. He was in front till the 200m mark but couldn't maintain his lead and eventually finished the race in fourth place.

His timing of 45.73 in that race became the Indian national record that stood for over 40 years. Milkha Singh was awarded the Padma Shri - India's fourth-highest civilian honour.

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