Know 25 Facts about Milkha Singh Short Biography of flying Sikh Milkha Singh
Name – Milkha Singh also known as The Flying Sikh
Birth Date - 17 October 1935, Lyallpur, Punjab, British India or Faisalabad (formarly Layallpur), Pakistan
Nationality - Indian
Occupation - Track and field athlete
Height - 5'8" (172 cm)
Spouse Name - He married to former captain of Indian Women Volleyball team, Nirmal Kaur
Children - Jeev Milkha Singh
As of 2013, he is the only Indian male athlete to win an individual athletics Gold in Commonwealth Games.
He lost his parents in the riots that followed the Indo-Pak partition.
He saw his parents and relatives being killed in front of his eyes during the Indo-Pak partition Massacre.
A 12 year old Milkha escaped for his life and came to India
He used to walk barefoot 10 km from his village to a school in Kot Addu tehsil.
Once, he was caught for travelling on a train without a ticket.
He was sent to Tihar Jail and was only released after his sister sold some jewellery to get him out.
He wanted to join the Indian Army but was rejected thrice.
He finally got in the fourth time after he enrolled in the engineering department.
He joined the EME Centre in Secunderabad in 1951.
It was here that his talent as an athlete was discovered.
Singh trained hard, often racing against the meter-gauge trains that went past Secunderabad.
He used to practice at night.
When his superior officers saw his talent, they converted his "fatigue time" (time when jawans do odd jobs) into his training time.
In fact, another celebrated runner, Paan Singh Tomar, on whose life Tigmanshu Dhulia made a film, was Singh's junior.
The Sikh apparently once defeated Tomar in a long-distance race.
His first competitive event was a cross-country race where he finished sixth among 500 runners.
In 1953, Singh joined the services after graduating from EME Centre.
After joining, Milkha Singh began training for a 400 meters race.
He represented India in the 1956 Melbourne Olympics
He won gold medals in both the 200m and 400m events at the 1958 Asian Games, clocking 21.6 seconds, and 47 seconds respectively.
He won a gold medal in the 400m competition at the 1958 Cardiff Commonwealth Games, clocking a time of 46.16 seconds and became the first gold medallist at the Commonwealth Games from independent India.
At the 1960 Olympics in Rome, he finished second in all of his 400m races prior to the final,
In the final event he set off strongly to the fore but was overhauled by the field and finished in fourth place
He lost the Bronze Medal in the 400m event at Rome Olympics Games 1960 by just 0.1 seconds.
Prior to the start of the event, Milkha was the favorite to clinch the gold medal and in the finals, he was among the leaders right after the start.
However, a costly mistake when he slowed down in the final 250 meters, proved to be the fractional difference between him and the eventual bronze medallist.
Such was his mental state that he cried for days after the agonizing defeat.
Even today he hasn`t been able to wipe out the bitter memory of the Rome Olympics.
Milkha Singh got name - Flying Sikh
During the 1950s, Singh's biggest rival was Abdul Khaliq, a runner from Pakistan.. In 1960, Pakistan invited him to compete in Pakistan but, scarred by the trauma of Partition, Singh refused.
It was only after then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru convinced him to go that Singh went to Pakistan.
One of the spectators who turned up to see Khaliq and Singh compete was General Ayub Khan. Singh won the race, and when Khan was giving away the medals, he told Singh, "You didn't run today, you flew." The Flying Singh nickname caught on from then.
Milkha Singh defeated the Fastest Pakistani runner Abdul Khaliq who had won a 100m Gold Medal at Tokyo Asian Games 1958 in the year 1962, and the Pakistani President Ayub Khan named him ‘The Flying Sikh
Post retirement, Milkha Singh was appointed the Director of Sports in Punjab.
His life story is the basis of a forthcoming biographical film, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag starring Farhan Akhtar and Sonam Kapoor.
Milkah Singh has also sold his Biography to Mehra for Re.1
Filmmaker also agreed that about 10 per cent of the movie's profits would go to the Milkha Singh Charitable Trust.
Singh claims that he has not seen a single movie since 1968.
Yet when he saw Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, he was moved to tears and told actor Farhan Akhtar, who plays him in the biopic, "You are a duplicate copy of Milkha Singh."
Milkha Singh has recently penned his autobiography entitled, The Race of My Life with his daughter Sonia Sanwalka, to be published by Rupa & Co., in August 2013
Milkha Singh and Arjuna Award –
Milkha Singh, probably the most celebrated Indian athlete of all times, refused to accept the Arjuna Award for lifetime contribution, saying: “I have been clubbed with sportspersons who are nowhere near the level that I had achieved”.
Milkha Singh said that Arjuna Awards, instituted in 1961, were being given to those who did not deserve them. “I am against this award itself and the way it is awarded”. He said he was of the view that the national sports awards like the Arjuna should be decided by specialists who had a deep understanding of the subject.
It is of no use giving such awards to such persons who might produce one freak performance during their lifetime ,’’
He also alleged that athletes took to drugs to perform better at home ‘‘but once they go abroad they are totally exposed since abroad all athletes are tested for drugs.’’
Milkha Singh wrote in the letter. The “prestige of the award has gone down. I will get a bad name if I accept it,” Milkha Singh said, adding, “it is surprising that organizers of Asian and other games have also been honored with national awards, especially after the 1982 Delhi Asian Games.’’
Milkha Singh said that “after the Padma Shri in 1958, the Arjuna Award in 2001 looks as if the government is trying to give me a matric certificate after an MA degree.
The Arjuna Award, least to say, could have been given to me in 1961 when it was first instituted
Milkha Singh ran 80 races all over the world winning 77, He was awarded the Helms World Trophy in 1959 by the USA by virtue of being the best 400-metre runner in the world and broke the Olympic record in the 1960 Rome Olympics.
1)Gold Medal - 1958 Commonwealth Games - 400 m
2)Gold Medal - 1958 Asian Games - 200 m and 400 m
3)Gold Medal - 1962 Asian Games
4)Padma Shri – 1958
5)Helms World Trophy – 1959
82-Year-old Milkha Singh told to PTI –
“My last desire before I leave this world is that I want an Indian boy or a girl wins an Olympic gold medal for the country and for my sake.
I failed to win it in Rome Olympics in 1960
“After 2-3 years, I may be no more.
Just a few days back my dear friend Dara Singh, who was like a brother to me, passed away. Whether I will live for next few years more, it is up to God. I want to see an Indian win an Olympic gold in athletics
Since India gained Independence, only five reached the finals in athletics event and all failed to win a medal
2)Gurbachan Singh Randhawa (1964)
3)Shri Ram Singh (1976)
4)PT Usha (1984)
5) Anju George.
Milkha Singh told to media that
I feel ashamed that after 1947 we produced a number of athletes, but failed to win any medal
Photo Milkha Singh –
Watch Video Milkha Singh Wins Gold Medal in 1958
Commonwealth Games - 400 m
Watch Video Rome Olympics - Milkha Singh's Run
Watch Biographical Documentary produced in 1970
Cinematographer Deepak Haldankar WICA, His first Film shot at Chandigarh in 1970.its a biographical documentary produced by Films Division.
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Friday, July 12, 2013
Tags – Facts Autobiography Biography Milkha Singh Flying Sikh
12 July 2013
Know 25 Facts about Milkha Singh Short Biography of flying Sikh Milkha Singh