(Last Updated on : 24/09/2013)
Lila Ram Sangwan was the first Indian wrestler to have won a gold medal during the 1958 British Empire Commonwealth Games which took place in Cardiff. He hailed from the district of Bhiwani
in the Northern Indian state
. Lila Ram is credited for emerging victorious in the freestyle wrestling in the national and international levels of wrestling championship. The categories involved those of heavyweight and super heavyweight.
Early Life of Lila Ram Sangwan
Lila Ram Sangwan was born on 30th November, 1930 in the village of Mandola in Bhiwani district. He belonged to a family of poor farmers from that region.
Achievements of Lila Ram Sangwan
Lila Ram Sangwan commenced his wrestling career in the year 1948, when he rendered his services to the Grenadiers Regimental Centre which was based in Nasirabad during that point of time. This Indian wrestler ruled the arena of wrestling during the late 50s and the early part of the 60s. In the 1956 Summer Olympics which was organised in Melbourne, he was the captain of the wrestling team. Jacobus Hanekom of South Africa lost to Lila Ram Sangwani in the finals of the British Empire and Commonwealth Games in 1958. This was the same event wherein strong wrestlers from the nations of England, Pakistan and Canada were also defeated by Lila Ram. In the Indo-Iran Test series, in 1956, Lila Ram won against Rustam-e-Iran Mohammed Ali.
Lila Ram served as the coach of the team of Indian wrestlers which had taken part in the 1968 Summer Olympics that was organised in Mexico City. He also worked as the chief coach of the Indian wrestling team which played in the World Championships which took place in Delhi
. Till the year 1973, he remained as the coach. From 1980 till 1988, Lila Ram is also said to have offered his services to the Sports Department of the Government of Haryana.
Awards of Lila Ram Sangwan
Lila Ram Sangwan was honoured with the Padma Shri
award in the year 1998, to appreciate his contribution in the field of sports.
He died on 11th October in the year 2003, in the area of Charkhi Dadri
in the district of Bhiwani.