Asian Games Gold Medalist in boxing and Padma Shri Awardee, Dingko Singh struggles with cancer.(Saumya Khandelwal/HT PHOTO)
Asian Games Gold Medalist in boxing and Padma Shri Awardee, Dingko Singh struggles with cancer.(Saumya Khandelwal/HT PHOTO)

Dingko returns home by road, tests positive

“Dingko has tested positive for Covid-19 today and has been shifted to a hospital from a quarantine centre in Imphal,” said boxer Sarita Devi who has been in touch with Dingko and his wife Babai Devi.
New Delhi | By HT Correspondent
UPDATED ON MAY 31, 2020 09:44 PM IST

Asian Games gold medallist Dingko Singh, who was airlifted to Delhi for his cancer treatment during the lockdown, has tested positive for Covid-19. Dingko is currently in Imphal having taken a two-day arduous road journey back in an ambulance on May 20.

“Dingko has tested positive for Covid-19 today and has been shifted to a hospital from a quarantine centre in Imphal,” said boxer Sarita Devi who has been in touch with Dingko and his wife Babai Devi.

“Dingko and his wife returned from Delhi a week ago and were put in a quarantine centre in Imphal. Three days ago he had fever and was tested,” said Sarita.

Dingko, 41, was battling a relapse of liver cancer. He was scheduled for a chemotherapy session at Delhi’s Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS) in March but was unable to travel to the Capital from Imphal because of the nationwide lockdown. The Boxing Federation of India (BFI) then brought Dingko and his wife to Delhi in a Spicejet air ambulance on April 26 and he was admitted at ILBS. The couple had to undergo tests for Covid-19 as was the travel protocol and both results came negative a day before they boarded the flight.

At ILBS the chemotherapy could not be done because Dingko was suffering from jaundice. “He wanted to come back to Imphal because he was scared he might get infected in the hospital. We asked him to stay back but he wanted to return to Imphal and visit ILBS once his bilirubin count went down,” said Sarita.

Dingko and his wife made the 2355km journey by road in an ambulance. There was a doctor and two drivers. “It took two days and once he returned, he was taken to a hotel in Imphal which is a makeshift quarantine centre,’ said Sarita.

“We came to know he had left for Imphal when he was already on the road. He did not inform us,” a BFI official who did not want to be named said.

Dingko was first diagnosed with cancer in 2016. The bantamweight boxer’s biggest moment came at the Asian Games in 1998 in Bangkok where he won gold which was India’s first boxing medal at the Games in 16 years.

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