Courtesy : Farhan Akhtar
Former Indian Sprinter Milkha Singh passed away due to post-Covid complications on Friday evening in Chandigarh. The legendary athlete was a celebrated figure across the entire nation and was introduced to the young generation with his 2013 biopic titled Bhaag Milkha Bhaag which saw Farhan Akhtar essaying the role of Milkha Singh.
Singh’s sad demise comes as a shocker to the entire nation. Now, Farhan has penned a moving post for the four-time Asian gold medalist winner.
“A part of me is still refusing to accept that you are no more. Maybe it’s the stubborn side I inherited from you.. the side that when it sets it’s mind on something, just never gives up. And the truth is that you will always be alive. Because you were more than a large hearted, loving, warm, down to earth man. You represented an idea. You represented a dream. You represented (to use your own words) how hard work, honesty and determination can lift a person off his knees and get him to touch the sky. You have touched all our lives. For those who knew you as a father and a friend, it was a blessing. For those who didn’t, your story was as a constant source of inspiration and a reminder of humility in success. I love you with all my heart,” Farhan wrote in a post on Saturday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi remembered him as a "colossal sportsperson who captured the nation's imagination". He tweeted, ''I had spoken to Shri Milkha Singh Ji just a few days ago. Little did I know that it would be our last conversation. Several budding athletes will derive strength from his life journey. My condolences to his family and many admirers all over the world.''
He further added, ''In the passing away of Shri Milkha Singh Ji, we 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. Anguished by his passing away.''
Meanwhile, many other personalities including Shah Rukh Khan, Akshay Kumar, Amitabh Bachchan and Priyanka Chopra also took to their social media handles to express their grief.
Akshay Kumar expressed that he is “incredibly sad” to hear about the demise of Milkha Singh. Paying him tribute, the actor said, “May you have a golden run in heaven, Flying Sikh.”
He was 91 and is survived by his golfer son Jeev Milkha Singh and three daughters.