Manipur’s first Asian Games gold medallist international boxer Ngangom Dingko has recovered from COVID-19, testing negative for the deadly virus on July 3 over a month after the cancer- stricken legend was hospitalised at the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS), Imphal.
Welcoming the news of Dingko’s recovery from COVID-19, Manipur Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren thanked doctors and staff of the RIMS where he has been given treatments and care since May 31.
It may be mentioned that Dingko Singh, the former Asian Games gold medalist, who is already battling liver cancer, tested positive for COVID-19 on May 30 after returning from Delhi.
His scheduled radiation therapy in March was delayed because of the COVID-19 lockdown and he was brought to Delhi in an air ambulance arranged by the Boxing Federation of India in the last week of April.
He was discharged on May 21 and arrived in Imphal on May 23. Since then has been put at a quarantined at Hotel Lanchenba, Imphal. It was also reported that he tested negative for COVID-19 just before leaving Delhi but tested positive on his return to Manipur.
However, his therapy could still not be completed because of jaundice and he took an arduous 2400km road journey back to Manipur in an ambulance.
Dingko has been battling ill-health for a number of years now, starting with the liver cancer, for which he is being treated since 2017. In between, he has also suffered from jaundice.
Having recovered from the extremely contagious disease after a month-long battle, Asian Games gold medallist Dingko will be home quarantined at his Imphal residence for a fortnight.
Before leaving RIMS for home, Dingko said, “It was a very difficult one month and endured the ordeal including five positive tests since his hospitalisation in the last week of May. I can’t express how to thank the doctors and nurses, who treated me. I am indebted to them for life.”
When asked about Dingko’s recovery from COVID-19, Medical Superintendent of RIMS, Dr. Ch Arunkumar told FPSJ Review, “We are very happy and it is a success of COVID-19 warrior team and administrative section of RIMS.”
He further said, Dingko is the second cancer patient who tested COVID-19 positive and recovered from it testing negative after treatment at RIMS.
Ngangom Dingko is employed with the Indian Navy and also worked as a coach before ill-health confined him to his home.
Dingko won gold medal in 54 Kg bantamweight boxing in the 13th Asian Games, 1998 in Bangkok. He was bestowed the Arjuna award in 1998 and was presented the India’s fourth highest civilian honour, the Padma Shri in 2013. He is considered as a maverick, who inspired the likes of six-time world champion MC Mary Kom and other boxers from Manipur.
Senior Editor: Imphal Review of Arts and Politics