KOLKATA -- 104-year-old bodybuilder Manohar Aich, who was once a household name in Bengal after becoming India's first Mr Universe in 1952, died at his Baguiati residence on Sunday afternoon, according to family sources.
"Aich was on a liquid died for last 10-15 days and had stopped talking. He breathed his last at 3.50pm," his son Khokan Aich told PTI.
Aich is survived by two daughters and two sons, one of whom manages a gym and fitness centre to fulfil his father's dream of making the youth "healthy and strong".
"Never quit exercise, he would always say. His mantra to stay healthy was simple healthy eating and exercise," Khokan added.
Former Bengal cricket captain Laxmi Ratan Shukla, who is Minister of State for Sports, visited Aich's residence to offer his condolence.
Aich, who turned 104 on March 17, had become India's first Mr Universe when he won the 1952 National Amateur Body-Builders' Association Universe Championships.
Born in the district of Comilla (now in Bangladesh), Aich, at just four feet and 11 inches, was not the tallest of men.
But encouraged by English officer Reub Martin, Aich took up bodybuilding and made this his passion during his stint at the Royal Air Force under British colonial rulers.
He also went on to serve jail term when some years later he protested against colonial oppression, something which Aich considered as "turning point" in his life.