Kolkata: From his former rivals N Srinivasan and Sharad Pawar to the current BCCI heavyweights, the Indian cricket fraternity bid an emotional farewell to Jagmohan Dalmiya on Monday, who was laid to rest with full state honour and gun salute.
The 75-year-old talismanic cricket administrator passed away at 8.45 pm on Sunday following a massive cardiac arrest at the B M Birla Heart Research Centre where he was admitted on Thursday evening.
The cricket fraternity mourned the loss of the man who is credited for making the sport popular and rich, prompting West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to announce full state honours for the departed Dalmiya.
Sourav Ganguly paying his respects to Jagmohan Dalmiya. PTISourav Ganguly paying his respects to Jagmohan Dalmiya. PTI
India’s top cricket administrators including, BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur, ICC chairman Srinivasan, IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla, former presidents Sharad
Pawar, Shashank Manohar gathered to pay their homage at Eden Gardens, where his body was kept for more than two hours.
The chief minister came around 3pm as it was time for the state guard of honour followed by a three-round gun salute by
10 Kolkata Police officials.
A senior member chanting ‘Dalmiya Amar Rahe’ (long live Dalmiya) put the national flag on the body as it began its final journey to Keoratala crematorium.
Banerjee, former India captain Sourav Ganguly along with state ministers and other CAB officials went to the crematorium to pay their homage as a pall of gloom descended on the city.
Earlier, accompanied by Ravi Shastri, BCCI secretary Thakur were the first to visit and the duo first went to Dalmiya’s 10 Alipore Road residence from where the Team India director left for the national camp in Bengaluru.
Dalmiya’s last journey began from his residence at 12.15pm before arriving at his ‘second home’ Eden Gardens around 1 pm accompanied by son Avishek, daughter Vaishali and wife Chandralekha and other relatives.
Now a CAB joint secretary, Ganguly along with his colleague Subir Ganguly and treasurer accompanied the dignitaries while paying floral tributes to Dalmiya.
ICC chairman Srinivasan called it a “a great loss” for the cricket fraternity while IPL chairman Shukla also echoed the same sentiments, saying it would be hard to fill the void.
Giving credit to Dalmiya for revolutionising the sport, he said: “When we won the 1983 World Cup the board didn’t have even 15 lakh money to reward the players and it was Lata Mangeshkar who had helped the Board.”