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Asian Games gold medalist Manipuri boxer Ngangom Dingko Singh passes away

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Ngangom Dinko Singh, the bantamweight boxer who won the Asian Games gold medal in the 1998 edition in Bangkok, passed away on Thursday after a long battle with liver cancer at his residence at Sekta village in Manipur’s Imphal East district. The 42-year-old was battling with ill-health for a number of years, starting with liver cancer, for which he was being treated since 2017. He had tested Covid positive last year, but had fought through and recovered.

Following the news of his demise, everyone sent their condolences for the Manipuri legend. Mary Kom called Dingko “a true hero” and said his legacy will live on. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Manipur’s Chief Minister N Biren Singh, Kiren Rijiju, Vijender Singh payed their tribute to the boxing legend too. Dingko, for his contribution to boxing in the country had won the Arjuna award in 1998 and was presented the nation’s fourth-highest civilian honour the Padma Shri in 2013.

“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. Dingko won the gold medal in 1998 at the 13th Asian Games, Bangkok ending India’s 16 years medal drought in the Asian Games. He was also Manipur’s first Asian Games gold medalist.

Dingko started his boxing career under L. Ibomcha Singh in 1990 at the SAI, Khuman Lampak Sports Complex, Imphal. The talented boxer’s big break came in 1991 after he won the Sub Juniors National Boxing Championship in Haryana’s Ambala and went on to achieve many milestones. In 1995, he joined the Indian Navy. For his outstanding contribution, the Manipuri pugilist was bestowed the Arjuna award in 1998 and conferred with Padma Shri, India’s fourth-highest civilian award, in 2013. Coaches and staff of SAI, Imphal organised a floral tribute in honour of the late boxer at the Khuman Lampak sports complex, Imphal.

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