Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said on Saturday that a chair will be named after Milkha Singh at the Sports University in Patiala. On Friday night, great track and field athlete Milkha Singh died of COVID-19-related complications. The Chief Minister told reporters outside Milkha Singh's Sector 8 home, "We are planning to have a Milkha Singh Chair in Sports University, Patiala." Chief Minister Singh had gone to visit Milkha's son Jeev and other family members to express his condolences, escorted by state Sports Minister Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi.
Milkha Singh became the first Indian athlete to win a Commonwealth Games gold medal, prompting then-Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to declare a national holiday in his honour. Singh was holding a photograph of the sprinter with Nehru when he paid a visit to the Milkha house here. "...this was a photograph shot with Pandit Ji (Nehru) in 1960, when he declared a national holiday. "I wish I could have declared it a national holiday, but I'm not in a position to do so," Singh added. "We (the Punjab government) have announced a state of mourning, and the tricolour will be flown at half-mast."