Dingko Singh: Boxing legend and Padmashri awardee who died on Thursday
- Dingko Singh was awarded the Padma Shri in 2013
- Singh won a gold medal in the 1998 Asian Games
- "Shri Dingko Singh was a sporting superstar," PM Modi expressed his condolences
"Shri Dingko Singh was a sporting superstar, an outstanding boxer who earned several laurels and also contributed to furthering the popularity of boxing. Saddened by his passing away. Condolences to his family and admirers. Om Shanti," Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted.
Who was Dingko Singh?
Born in a remote village in Manipur's Imphal East District, Dingko Singh was brought up in an orphanage. Singh's talent was first recognised by the trainers at a Special Area Games Scheme initiated by the Sports Authority of India. The CEO of Delhi Corporate Game, Major OP Bhatia trained Singh. At the age of 10, Dingko Singh won the Sub Junior National Boxing Championship in 1989 at Ambala.
The next major step in Singh's career was his international debut in 1997. He won the King's Cup and was declared the best boxer of the meet. Singh went on to represent India at the 1998 Asian Games and at the 2000 Summer Olympics.
In the 1998 Asian Games, Singh first defeated World No 3 Wong Prages Sontaya in the semi-final and then won against Uzbekistan's Timur Tulyakov in the final. Timur had to retire after the fourth round of the fight.
Dingko Singh was honored with the Arjuna Award in 1998 and later with the Padma Shri Award in 2013. He was employed by the Indian navy. Singh took up coaching after retirement.
Actor Shahid Kapoor and director Raja Krishna Menon were reportedly working on a biopic based on Dingko Singh's life. The film was shelved in 2019.