Sunday, July 21, 2013

Flying Sikh’s life reaches new heights

At the age of 81, his demeanour and gait can make the younger generation break into cold sweat. Amidst attending to congratulatory calls from friends and family for the success of the film Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, coordinating the working of his charitable trust that helps poor and needy sportspersons in Chandigarh and attending numerous functions to felicitate him and his efforts, veteran athlete Milkha Singh takes out time to talk about his life and struggles.
His autobiography, The Race of My Life, will hit the stands next month. Dressed in his trademark red turban, tie and a navy blue suit, he confesses that he is enjoying all the attention and glory. “All this sudden busyness in my life at this age is only making me feel that I should live for another decade,” he exclaims.
He starts off on a casual note, saying, “After decades, it is fun to get the limelight. You must have heard about the call from Carl Lewis after watching the film. He was so overwhelmed with it that he wants to gift me something and asked me what I would like. Ab iss umar mein kya hi aur mangu.” He adds, “Just like you, most of the present generation was not even born when I was at my peak. They had no idea about my traumatic childhood, poverty, army life and my glorious years as country’s top athlete. The film has helped to shed a light on all these aspects of my life and I’m glad that I am alive to watch how positively it has been received by all.”
He is quick to add that he had not planned any of this and he didn’t even know that a film would be made on his life. “A book was written on my life in Punjabi 35 years ago and translated to Hindi later. After reading the latter, three or four Bollywood directors approached me. I have stopped watching films post 60s and had no idea, who should I give my nod to. But my son Jeev had watchedRang De Basanti and loved it. So he asked me to let Rakeysh direct a biopic on me,” he explains. He says his only conditions were that the film should be inspirational and 10 percent of the profits from the movie should go to his trust. He is happy with end product. “More than 80 percent of the film has been drawn from my real experiences. Baaki filmon mein thoda addition to karna padta hai,” he smiles and adds.

with thanks : asianage : LINK : for detailed news.

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