Olympian Balbir Singh Kular of Punjab Police is no more. He died after cardiac arrest. Balbir Singh Kular was 77 and became the third Indian hockey star to lose the battle for life since December 18 last year.
Jagdev Singh Rai, who played for India in the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games, died on December 18 after a prolonged illness. Early last month, Pritpal Kaur, alias Palli, who was a member of the 1982 Asian Games champion Indian women’s hockey team, lost her battle to cancer. Both Jagdev Singh and Pritpal Kaur were in their 50s.
Balbir Singh, who was a recipient of the Arjuna Award in 1999 and Padma Shri 2009 had tired from Punjab Police as Deputy zInspector-General of Police after serving on the security staff of the late Punjab Chief Minister Beant Singh.
Balbir Singh made his debut in international hockey in 1963 when he accompanied the Indian team to Leyons. He also toured Europe, East Africa, and New Zealand as a member of the Indian team. In domestic hockey, he represented Punjab and Punjab Police though he also played briefly for Railways.