‘Health is wealth, I’m the richest man in the world’

Sangram Singh, a popular health icon with thousands of followers has in the past been a cop, a wrestling champion, a motivational speaker, an actor and was recently awarded an Honorary Doctorate at the Nelson Mandela Nobel Peace Awards

Sangram Singh a cop, a wrestling champion, a motivational speaker, an actor is now a popular health icon with 2 million followers on social media. His life is his message: live your dream every day to make it a reality

Sangram Singh was returning from a function with India’s ace spinner Harbajan Singh where he hogged the limelight in Gurugram. Speaking on the video call while he was being driven to another event, he talked about being a lone ranger and he knows that if anyone applies his or her mind and there’s no going back then things are bound to happen. “99% is hard work, 1% is luck,” he says and he’s not joking for he has demonstrated it over the past decades.

His simple lifestyle, regular exercise has kept him in good shape. He can give many godmen a run for their money given his eloquence to express complex ideas colloquially and his simple rural wisdom that has inspired millions of people. The most recent recognition was when he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the American University Of Global Peace, along with India’s yesteryear ace tennis player Leander Paes, at The Nelson Mandela Nobel Peace Awards function held in Goa. “By the grace of God, I was awarded the doctorate degree with my childhood favourite tennis player Leander Peas,” he reacted.

Now in his mid-thirties, having dealt with debilitating physical deformities in his childhood, was a relatively weak child who grew up to become a national wrestling champion, is a natural fighter who never gives up. He was a cop in Delhi Police before he shifted to Mumbai to pursue his dreams. He has since featured in various reality shows, movies, and has been a motivational speaker, his life is his lesson and message.

He’s become a national health icon and people like Baba Ramdev should be concerned for he talks about natural, home remedies, and a healthy lifestyle to deal with chronic diseases that have gripped the middle class in various metropolises. He believes in the body’s incredible capacity to repair and all that’s required is a disciplined life with the application of both mind and body.

Sangram Singh along with his childhood icon Leander Peas at the Nelson Mandela Nobel Peace awards held in Goa

“My body’s age is 13 years and 7 months,” he declares. There seems to be some truth in it, for he was a bulky wrestler ten years ago, is now a muscular man with a toned body—almost boyish. He visits top education institutions in the country, like IITs and IIMs, and talks about how ‘almost nothing is impossible’ and motivates people to believe in and live their dreams.  He speaks with a rural swag, and has been unapologetic about his humble origins, instead uses it to his advantage. Lately, he’s become very expressive in the Queen’s language and much of our interaction happened in English.

There’s no confusion in his mind, he speaks with a lingering smile on his face and words come out in quick succession. He’s not bothered whether he’d be taken seriously or not as long, as he’s able to put forth his thoughts.  He has this enviable capacity to captivate all kinds of gatherings with his oratory.

“The world belongs to the crazy people,” he says, “History is witness: the crazy are the change agents, make the world a better place to live in.” He draws pleasure in his crazy outlook on the world and his ability to make a difference by his sheer audacity to dream big.

“I don’t distinguish between a prime minister, a bureaucrat, an industrialist or a beggar, a hawker or a peddler. I have nothing to lose is what empowers me. I’m not scared of anyone because I know I can bounce back from any situation. I’m a self-made man and I can do it again and again” he declares.

Though he has a partner and is very concerned about the welfare of his ageing parents, is going to spend a few days with them in his village in Haryana, despite, he reasserts, “I’m not attached to anything material.” When he wakes up in the morning, he thinks about how he can contribute to “my country, my society”. He claims to be a selfless person that keeps him going. “Eyes are useless if the mind is blind,” he says theatrically.

“I’m the richest person in the world as health is the real wealth,” he’s not joking, “to enjoy life, you need a healthy body.” It’s not the other way round, many end up destroying their health on the pretext of enjoying life. The greatest high is good health believes Sangram Singh who offers his friends milk when they call on him—no chai or coffee, aerated cold drinks are a big no.

Sangram Singh with cricketer Harbhajan Singh

There are reasons why he’s been made the brand ambassador of the ‘Fit India Campaign-2021’—a government of India initiative. It is a nation-wide movement that encourages people to remain fit by regularly exercising and adopting a healthy lifestyle. He has redefined various axioms of life, to him “rich person is the one who helps others in distress, those who hoard money are merely gatekeepers or chowkidaars.” And the biggest gift is not kanyadaan or vidyadaan but help people lead a healthy life.

“I am self-sufficient for my needs. I eat local, seasonal vegetarian food. I never eat out or overeat. I’m happy with a chapatti and onion and eat with much relish, chewing my food slowly while taking long and deep breaths.” That’s the profound joy of eating. “Temptations, of any kind, are ephemeral, and is all in your mind,” he explains the true nature of greed.

At a young age, he’s figured out these basic tenets of life by bringing a change in his own life, for sure he’s not a hypocrite who doesn’t practise what he preaches.

Many who know him won’t be surprised if he becomes the global poster boy of “simple living, high thinking while working relentlessly to realise dreams.” As someone famously said, when you want something badly, the whole universe conspires to make it happen. Amen!

 

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