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Beat this! Salim Khan thinks Bollywood resurrected Milkha Singh from fading away in oblivion

How many people knew who Milkha Singh was before Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra's Bhaag Milkha Bhaag? Not many, if Bollywood writer and Salman Khan's father Salim Khan is to be believed.

In a series of tweets on Monday, he defended his son's appointment as India's "goodwill ambassador" for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics. While several people, including Olympians Abhinav Bindra and MC Mary Kom, have also backed the appointment, it does have its fair share of detractors, most vocal being Olympic bronze-medallist Yogeshwar Dutt and legendary runner Milkha Singh.

However, Salim Khan's defence went one step further, attacking Milkha Singh instead.

"Milkhaji it is not Bollywood it is the Indian Film Industry and that too the largest in the world. The same industry which resurrected you from fading away in oblivion," tweeted Salim Khan in obvious reference to the 2013 biopic starring Farhan Akhtar in the eponymous role.

Earlier, Singh had questioned 'the need to import a person from Bollywood'. "I am of the view that our sportspersons — be those from shooting, athletics, volleyball or other sports — are the real ambassadors of India, who could represent the country in the Olympics. Still, if we had to pick an ambassador, it could have been from the sporting arena. India has produced so many sportspersons who have given their sweat and blood for the country, like PT Usha, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Ajit Pal and so many others. One of these could have been made a goodwill ambassador," the former Olympian had said on Salman's appointment.

File photo of Milkha Singh and Salim Khan. Getty Images

File photo of Milkha Singh and Salim Khan. Getty Images

He had further asked if Bollywood ever accorded the same position to a sportsperson. "This is for the first time I am seeing a Bollywood hero being made a goodwill ambassador for the Olympics. I want to ask, has Bollywood ever made any sportsperson an ambassador for any of their mega events? I want the decision to name Salman Khan as ambassador be revised."

Salim Khan seemed to object to Milkha Singh's usage of the term "Bollywood". But his critique didn't end there. Salim went on to say that "Sportsmen are performing because of sports lovers like us".

"Salman Khan may not have competed, but is an A-level swimmer, cyclist and weight lifter," answering people who questioned his athletic credibility for Olympics.

While defending Salman Khan is fine, doing it at the cost of undermining athletes may not be the right idea, especially when one is talking about the prestigious Olympic Games.

Updated Date: Apr 26, 2016 13:53 PM

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