Indian sprint legend Milkha Singh passed away on Friday after a month-long battle with COVID-19. He was 91. He recently lost his wife Nirmal Kaur to the virus and is survived by his golfer son Jeev Milkha Singh and three daughters.
“It is with extreme sadness that we would like to inform you that Milkha Singh Ji passed away at 11.30 pm. on the 18th of June 2021.
“He fought hard but God has his ways and it was perhaps true love and companionship that both our mother Nirmal ji and now Dad have passed away in a matter of 5 days.
“We are deeply indebted to the doctors at PGI for their valiant efforts and the love and prayers we received from across the world and from yourselves,” family statement reads.
According to SportStar, Milkha had also contracted Covid-19 and was hospitalised on June 3. He was shifted out of the COVID ICU on Wednesday after testing negative for the virus.
However, after he developed a fever and his oxygen saturation level also dropped, he was moved back to the Intensive Care Unit of the PGIMER hospital.
“Despite best of the efforts by a medical team, Milkha Singh ji could not be retrieved from his critical condition and after a brave fight, he left for his heavenly abode at 11:30 pm,” the hospital stated.
The legendary athlete, a four-time Asian Games gold medallist and 1958 Commonwealth Games champion, missed the bronze medal at the 1960 Rome Olympics by 1/100th of a second.
His timing at the Italian capital was a national record for 38 years till Paramjeet Singh broke it in 1998. He also represented India in the 1956 and 1964 Olympics and was honoured with the Padma Shri in 1959.