Track legend Milkha Singh passed away on Friday at the age of 91. He had tested positive for COVID-19 in May this year. Fondly called The Flying Sikh, his story was shown on the big screen in the film ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’, where Farhan Akhtar played the titular role. The actor-filmmaker took to his social media pages and shared a photo with Milkha and penned a heartbreaking note on his demise.
Taking to his Twitter account, Farhan shared a throwback picture with the sprint icon alongside a lengthy note. “Dearest Milkha ji, a part of me is still refusing to accept that you are no more,” Farhan wrote. “Maybe it’s the stubborn side I inherited from you.. the side that when it sets its 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 as a constant source of inspiration and a reminder of humility in success. I love you with all my heart.”
— Farhan Akhtar (@FarOutAkhtar) June 19, 2021
Farhan’s girlfriend, actor-singer Shibani Dandekar also took to her Instagram account to share throwback photos with Milkha Singh and his family.
She wrote, “One of the greatest memories I have is meeting Milkha Ji and his lovely family (just the one time) and eating aloo parathas with lots of butter (of course) in his home. He told us stories from his days… and what incredible stories they were … the journey of a man with tremendous courage, fighting spirit, and perseverance. Through it all, he never lost the qualities that made him such a great human and I found myself instantly drawn to him… I loved him immediately.”
She added, “He had such a warm heart, was such a gentle soul and had this way of lighting up a room with his incredible energy. He really is the true champion that this country knows him as but I learnt that he is also one of the kindest people this world has ever had ..there will never be another like you Milkha Ji .. will miss your beautiful laugh .. hope you are dancing in the clouds with Nirmal aunty .. you will both greatly missed. Love you.”
As soon as news about Milkha Singh’s demise came out, tributes began pouring in. Apart from Farhan and Ritesh, Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Akshay Kumar, Anupam Kher, Suniel Shetty, Nimrat Kaur and other Bollywood stars remembered the legendary sprinter and paid a tribute to him. Prime Minister Narendra Modi also remembered him in a tweet.