Body building fraternity mourns Aich's death

Kolkata: The demise of former Mr Universe Manohar Aich has left the entire body-building fraternity mourning. The 104-year-old Aich, who was an exemplar for many renowned body-builders, breathed his last at his Baguiati residence in northeast Kolkata on Sunday afternoon. Champion Bengal body-builder Ashim Mallik, who is both shocked and saddened after hearing the news said: “If you have not seen him performing live, you have missed something in life. Very sad to hear about his death.” Aich, who flexed his muscles in several countries, became Mr Hercules and Mr Universe in 1950 and 1952, respectively.  Former Mr India Tushar Sil, who had been associated with Aich since 1975 said it is a loss for the whole country. “It is a great loss for not only Bengal but also India,” Sil said. Refraining from using food supplements and medicine, Aich had a chiselled body that was the result of his determination to work hard. “His theory was to gradually increase exercising with increase in age” said Sil.  Another ex-Mr India Damodar Chatterjee said that leading a simple life and exercising till the last day of his life made Aich an inspiration for every sportsman. “He used to say that sweat never betrays” said Chatterjee. “I met him first at the great Oriental Circus where he showed power packed performances. He had a heart as big as his muscles.” Chatterjee added that if the next generation follows the path shown by Aich, they too will be blessed with long lives.