Milkha Singh had been promoted from the rank of sepoy to junior commissioned officer in recognition of his successes in the 1958 Asian Games.He subsequently became Director of Sports in the Punjab Ministry of Education.
Singh had been awarded the Padma Shri following his success in 1958. In 2001, he turned down an offer of the Arjuna Award from the Indian government, arguing that it was intended to recognise young sportspeople and not those such as him. He also thought that the Award was being inappropriately given to people who had little notable involvement as active sports people at all. He said that “I have been clubbed with sportspersons who are nowhere near the level that I had achieved” and that the award had become devalued.
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag is a 2013 biographical film of Singh’s life.Singh sold the rights to produce the movie, which is based on a book written by him, for one rupee but inserted a clause stating that a share of the profits would be given to a charitable trust set up in his name.
Contributed By Sonia Narula